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Pubdate: Sun, 09 Jul 2000
Source: MSNBC.com (US Web)
Copyright: 2000 MSNBC.com
Contact: letters@msnbc.com


Kelly Cook Was Arrested Outside Of Her Home Sunday Morning.

LEE COUNTY, Fla., July 9 -- Lee County sheriff's deputies were called to a Fort Myers
Shores home late Saturday night, after gunshot were reported in the area. But once on scene,
deputies say they didn't find bullets. Instead, they found a backyard full of marijuana plants.

DEPUTIES WERE SHOCKED to find the plants behind 31 year-old Kelly Cook's home.
But no one was more surprised than the alleged grower's neighbor, Louise Russell.

"I'm very surprised," she said. "I never would've expected it out of that lady."

Deputies found the plants growing freely in Cook's backyard. Russell says Cook told her she
was doing some cultivating, but not growing pot.

"She was borrowing garden tools from my husband saying she didn't have any," Russell said.
"Turns out she was growing marijuana."

Deputies seized 10-plant ranging in size from 12 to 14-inches in size.

According to police reports, Cook admitted, "the plants were indeed hers."

She was growing the plants because, "her friend had back problems."

Cooks was allegedly growing to plants to ease her friend's pain.

Regardless of Cook's reasons, Russell is just glad her neighborhood is now a little safer.

"Hopefully the kids can walk the neighborhood. I have grandkids, I'm not going to have them
around drugs," she said.

Deputies say this is a crude operation. Usually, when someone is growing for profit, they
grow inside in a controlled environment.

Cook is now facing two-felony counts: one for cultivation, one for possession over 20-grams.

Cook is expected to be in court Monday. She has a previous misdemeanor DUI, with
resisting arrest, charge from 1989.
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