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Watson man accused of growing pot, having guns while on probation

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WATSON — A Lewis County probationer was arrested Friday on charges he was growing marijuana and illegally was in possession of 10 guns.

Lewis County sheriff’s deputies charged Michael A. Townsend, 54, of 6621 Baldwin Road, with unlawfully growing cannabis, second-degree criminal possession of marijuana and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon. He was arraigned in Lowville Village Court and sent to Lewis County jail, Lowville, without bail.

Deputies said they assisted county probation officials at Mr. Townsend’s home and discovered a grow room containing marijuana plants and more than a pound of the drug processed and bagged, along with seven pistols, two rifles and a shotgun.

He is not to possess firearms because of his felony probation status, deputies said.

Mr. Townsend in November 2011 was sentenced to six months in jail, a $2,500 fine, five years’ probation, a one-year driver’s license revocation, $520 in court fees and mandatory participation in ignition interlock and victim impact panel programs on a felony charge of driving while intoxicated stemming from a June 27, 2011, stop on Erie Canal Road in the town of Watson.

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