A Maplewood Richmond Heights graduate, Zachary Pirtle, 25, of St. Louis, as identified by several local classmates, has been charged with manufacturing controlled substance and could face 5 to 15 years in prison, according to the Ozark County Times.
In Rockbridge, MO, a resident looking for a lost horse stumbled upon Pirtle’s “large-scale marijuana and K2 (synthetic marijuana) drug cultivation and distribution operation in the woods.”
In a raid, Ozark County Police uncovered what appeared to be a drug-dealing operation with sales in several states and foreign countries.
"About 2:15 p.m. Tuesday, the large group of officers, armed with a search warrant, raided the area and immediately encountered a strong smell of marijuana, (Ozark County Sheriff Darrin) Reed said. The officers found more than 60 marijuana plants growing on the property with water hoses running to all of them. Reed said they also found two 10’ by 16’ canvas huts close to the plants. Inside the officers found several pounds of processed marijuana and K2 and several marijuana plants hanging up to dry.
"Further investigation led the officers to a storage shed that was ‘stacked full of boxes where they were shipping this through the mail,’ Reed said. The packages included a return address at Rockbridge and were addressed from the business name ‘Eternity in a Box.’”