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Tuesday, May 22, 2018
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Burglary call leads deputies to Port Richey grow house

More than five dozen marijuana plants were found inside a man’s Port Richey home Wednesday night, authorities said. Leudis Miguel Mendoza, 36, 7131 Nova Scotia Dr., is charged with cultivation of and trafficking marijuana. About 9:30 p.m. Wednesday, deputies arrived at 7025 Cherry Laurel Dr. in Port Richey to investigate a burglary in progress. During the investigation, Mendoza arrived and said he owned the home and lived there, according to the arrest report. As deputies swept the home to ensure a suspect wasn’t inside, they found several marijuana plants, which Mendoza admitted to growing, deputies said.
A search turned up about 70 plants, weighing 61 pounds, according to the arrest report. There were also five pit bull terriers removed from the house, two of which were caged inside a shed in the yard, leading to animal cruelty charges as well, deputies said. The dogs showed evidence of scaring from fighting and were malnourished, the report said. A treadmill was located inside the house, which was modified to train the dogs for fighting, according to the Pasco Sheriff’s Office. Mendoza remains in the Land O’ Lakes Jail with a $20,000 bond.
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