The five marijuana plants in an Athens backyard garden had reached a robust 5 feet before they were uprooted, dried in the sun and then confiscated by Limestone County investigators Wednesday.

A anonymous caller alerted authorities the day before to a collection of marijuana plants growing in a garden at the home of Stanley Michael Scott, 44, of 24437 Frank Gossett Road, said Investigator Lance Royals. An investigator drove by the home to see.

“His wife saw him drive by and when he (Scott) got home, he pulled them up,” Royals said.

When the investigators returned the next day, they came into the backyard and questioned Scott about the pot in his garden, the investigator said.

“The garden was surrounded by fishing line to keep people out, and his wife got tangled in it while walking around,” Royals said. “He told us he didn’t have any marijuana in his garden, which technically was true since he pulled them up.”

After looking around, the investigators found marijuana near the corner of the house, the investigator said.

“He took all the leaves off the stalks and had them lying on a sheet ready to smoke,” Royals said. “They were laid out from one end (of the sheet) to the other.”

Scott was charged with first-degree possession of marijuana, which is a felony, and he also had an ounce of pot in the house already dried, Royals said.

“Even though it was an amount for personal use, it gets bumped up to a felony when you grow it,” Royals said, though he recommends neither.

Scott was released Wednesday from the Limestone County Jail after posting a $5,000 bond, records show.

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