National News

Hemp thefts put Edgecombe men in the joint

Posted September 20

— Officials with the Edgecombe County Sheriff's Office are investigating incidents in which people have been trying to steal hemp plants growing in the county.

Industrial hemp is not marijuana, and it contains less than 1 percent of the drug THC, which is found in higher levels in marijuana.

On Sept. 18, deputies responded to a report of a suspicious vehicle near one hemp field and found three subjects attempting to steal hemp plants. William Cooper, Malik Hudson and Jacquel Baker-Johnson were charged with second-degree trespassing. They were released on $2,500 unsecured bonds.

On Sept. 19, deputies responded to a report of a suspicious vehicle in the area of the same hemp field and found two people who had stolen hemp plants already. Milton Epps and Kenneth Williams were charged with felony larceny and second-degree trespassing. Williams was also charged with driving while license revoked. Epps and Williams were jailed at the Edgecombe County Detention Center under $50,000 bonds.

Deputies will continue to monitor the hemp fields in the county and arrest anyone trespassing at these sites, authorities said.

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