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Summit County Sheriff’s deputies confiscate over 100 lbs. of marijuana in I-80 bust

Marijuana buds and leaves
Andrey Saprykin
/
iStockphoto

On Monday a routine traffic stop by police on I-80 near Echo resulted in a discovery of 115 pounds of marijuana and other contraband.

Summit County Sheriff’s deputies pulled over a vehicle for not having insurance, which is required by Utah law and can be checked by running plates.

After officers detected a whiff of marijuana, police dogs gave an indication that they were onto something.

A full search yielded 155 pounds of marijuana and over 12 pounds of THC resin — a byproduct of cannabis, along with 22 joints and some vape cartridges.

The two men involved were booked into jail for possession of drugs. They both live outside of Utah. One is a 38-year-old from Minnesota, and the other a 26-year-old from Florida. A conviction for possessing over 100 pounds of marijuana can carry a sentence of 1-15 years in prison in Utah.

Summit County Sheriff’s Capt. Andrew Wright said he’s seen similar cases throughout the years.

“I-80 is known for a corridor for drug trafficking,” Wright said.

I-80 is the second-longest interstate in the country, stretching from California to New Jersey.

Medicinal marijuana is legal in Utah; however, it is highly regulated by the state. Recreational use is illegal, which conflicts with bordering states including Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and Arizona.

“There’s the big debate in our country of whether or not marijuana should be legalized,” Wright said.

“We have to remind people, law enforcement — we’re not the ones that make the laws. And so we encourage people to talk to their state legislators and their congress people to make their voices known on the issue. However, our job as law enforcement is to enforce the laws that are on the books.”

He encouraged people to learn more about the laws pertaining to marijuana in individual states.

Parker Malatesta covers Park City for KPCW. Before coming to NPR, he spent one year as a general assignment reporter for TownLift in Park City. He previously was the news editor at The News Record, the student paper at the University of Cincinnati. He loves running, reading, and urban planning.