Thonotosassa- Marijuana Grow House- Lyme Patient
Bay News 9- Brighthouse Network
Thonotosassa woman defends alleged grow house on medical grounds
Anna Lambdin says she was diagnosed with Lyme disease six years ago, and that the marijuana she was arrested for growing is part of her treatment.
By Erin Maloney, Reporter
Last Updated: Friday, February 13, 2015
A Thonotosassa woman arrested for a grow house operation says she was just using the drug to treat her Lyme disease.
Anna Lambdin says she was diagnosed with Lyme disease six years ago, and that the illness left her without balance, coordination or energy.
The former scuba dive instructor says the headaches, nausea, and pain were too much to bear, so she turned to marijuana.
"I didn't sell or distribute," she said. "It was strictly to keep food down."
But deputies didn't see it her way when they knocked down her door this week at her home in Thonotosassa.
Detective Larry McKinnon says her story doesn't jive with the evidence.
"There's a significant difference between having a marijuana plant growing in a small one-gallon container in your backyard or front window," he said. "But when you rise to the level of this operation, this is beyond what a normal person can use for personal consumption."
McKinnon says the street value of the drugs found in Lambdin's closet would be "in the thousands of dollars." He also added there was a gun by the drugs, which he says is common in grow house operations.
But Lambdin, 58, says it was all hers, and she makes no apologies.
"Without it, I can't survive, and I won't," she said. "So what they did was take away what allowed me to eat and not throw up, and there's nothing I can do about it. I didn't want to go on the streets to get it. I didn't want to be a bad citizen. I just wanted to live. And now I feel my days are numbered, and I'm frightened."
Deputies say they're just doing their job, and unless Florida law changes, neither will their stance.
"When we get a Crime Stoppers tip, we will investigate no matter what," said McKinnon.
Lambdin is charged with cultivation of marijuana, possession of marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia.