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Attorney: Knightdale man was growing pot because he has cancer

Posted July 13, 2015

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— Four members of a Knightdale family charged with growing and selling marijuana in their home may have been trying to help a dying man.

An attorney for Tracy Lynn Frost, 52, said in court Monday that his client has cancer and was using pot for medicinal purposes.

"My client is gravely ill and has accepted full responsibility for this entire ordeal," said attorney Bill Young, who did not disclose what type of cancer Frost suffers from. "He’s going to do everything he can to make it right before he dies, which, candidly, could be very soon."

The prosecutor said investigators had been watching the family house on Woodfield Lane for about a year when an air conditioning repairman apparently smelled the odor of marijuana at the home, saw pipes coming out of the house and called police last week.

Tracy Frost and his wife, Susan Pate Frost, 44, were charged Friday with manufacturing marijuana, maintaining a dwelling for keeping or selling controlled substances and possession with intent to distribute.

Tracy Frost's two stepdaughters were also arrested. Brittany Alexandria Coley, 22, a social studies teacher at West Johnston High School, was charged with drug trafficking, manufacturing marijuana, possession with intent to distribute, maintaining a dwelling for keeping or selling controlled substances and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Ashlyn Brooke Coley, 19, was charged with two counts of trafficking marijuana.

Investigators say the women were flushing the marijuana down the toilet when police entered the home to search it. About 13 pounds were found.

Young said Tracy Frost was not selling marijuana but using it to self-medicate, and he’s cooperating with investigators. He also said Frost's wife and stepdaughters were not involved with growing the plants.

"He is responsible,” Young said. “He accepts responsibility."

A judge on Monday lowered the bond for each suspect to $50,000.

Brittany Coley has been suspended without pay from her teaching job, according to school district officials.

42 Comments

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  • Kevin Ashley Jul 15, 2015
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    To those claiming that 13 lbs is a bit much, you might need to understand a few things. First, it depends on how intense the pain is, how strong the marijuana is, and how much of a tolerance he has. None of you know the answer to these points, so none of you have any call to be judging him and making asinine statements as "noone needs that much"... maybe you don't know that marijuana is an annual plant. They plant it, they wait as much as 5 months and then they harvest it. Usually, you only get 1 harvest a year out of marijuana. Sure there are strains that harvest quicker, but their yields are a quarter to half of what photo plants are. The man is dying.. let him have his way out. Honestly, it may be illegal, but his own lawyer doubts he will see the end of a trial so what's the point?

  • Steven Cousler Jul 14, 2015
    user avatar

    The police found 13 pounds plus evidence they were flushing more down the toilet when the search warrant was served (pretty sure they weren't flushing stalks). The police had been watching the residence for about a year and probably observed the coming and going of many more people than usually visit a typical home. Personal use of marijuana for whatever reason at most requires a few ounces a week - not more than a dozen pounds.

    Suspected trafficking is justified and so is the charge.

    I don't agree that marijuana should be illegal - but it still is in this state and these folks will be held accountable.

  • Johnny Byrd Jul 14, 2015
    user avatar

    I am sure they weighed the entire GREEN plant. With that said, dried to usable condition removing all stalks stems and leaves, none of those normally used, that might come out to a couple of pounds of usable pot.

  • Paul Jones Jul 14, 2015
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    For a lot of $$$

  • Sam Adams Jul 14, 2015
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    That did actually occur to me, but I did not gay marriage into this debate. You are correct, every poll I have seen has shown more support for legalizing cannabis than those that support legalizing gay marriage. Now gay marriage is legal, I just think its only a matter of time until all Cannabis is legal. Its just a plant and I think everyone should have the right to grow it if they wish. Call me naïve but I believe in a simple concept called freedom.

  • Frank Rizzo Jul 14, 2015
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    you do realize that every poll ever conducted as to whether or not gay marriage should be legal showed that the American people did not want gay marriage right? not most polls, every poll. that's why all of the states started passing legislation banning gay marriage. this is all pre scotus ruling fyi. so you believe scotus got it wrong then? since every poll was against gay marriage but scotus made it legal anyways, we should go with poll results right? like with marijuana.

  • Roy Hinkley Jul 14, 2015
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    While we're at at, can we legalize home distillation of spirituous liquor?

  • Roy Hinkley Jul 14, 2015
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    Good point about epilepsy. The law required DHHS to set guidelines by the end of 2014; I am not sure what guidelines or limitations they ultimately settled on.

    I too would think a physician could find a way to prescribe if needed.

  • Sara Hauser Jul 14, 2015
    user avatar

    if this man is terminal and in poor condition, there are legal ways to get pain medicine-he can get hospice services. They educate the family on options and medicine is kept at home and family is instructed on relief measures. Hospice is a wonderful service for those who need it.

  • Sam Adams Jul 14, 2015
    user avatar

    Every poll out there shows clearly that the majority of Americans believe Cannabis should be legal. Its only a matter of time. Citizens should have the freedom to make their own choices on how they wish to live their lives.

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