Roanoke Rapids Man Who Reported Theft Of Marijuana Plants Has Died
Posted August 21, 2001 5:00 a.m. EDT
ROANOKE RAPIDS — A Roanoke Rapids man who called 911 to report teens were stealing his marijuana plants has died. Emmitt Scott claimed he was growing the pot in his back yard so he could use it to relieve intense pain.
Friends and neighbors describe Emmit Scott as a quiet man who tended his garden. He grew melons, mint leaves and marijuana. Last month, sheriff's deputies confiscated Scott's 27 plants and arrested him after he made his pot patch public in a 911 call.
Scott told people he grew the pot and made tea with it to help his ailing kidney.
"It did give him a lot of energy. It just motivated him all day long," says neighbor Brenda Abbott.
Three weeks after deputies took the pot out of Scott's garden, he died at Halifax Regional Medical Center. A preliminary autopsy indicates he died from liver failure, but for now, the hospital has ruled his death is due to natural causes.
"He always walked back and forward to the mailbox, speak to you in a good mood and then, all of the sudden when this bust started, you know he looked like he went downhill and just got sick," says Scott's friend Joe Price.
The Halifax County Sheriff's Office says it is sorry Scott died, but it says it cannot be held responsible for his death.
Investigators say they do not believe Scott grew the marijuana with the intent to sell it to anyone. They say even if he had been convicted of growing the pot, he probably would not have received jail time because he had no prior record.