A raid on a cannabis plantation in the Emerald Triangle has taken a turn for the worse, leaving a dog dead, and people have questions.
Los Angeles Times reports This anger builds as details of the incident are revealed, given that the farm had a statewide license and was in the process of being approved at the county level. As anger grows, some local residents are calling for the resignation of Trinity County Sheriff Tim Saxon.
a 36-second video clip A Cal Fire officer is shown shooting a dog in a chaotic attempt to control the situation. The video was uploaded by Kim Kemp, who regularly reports on the Emerald Triangle. An officer in the video says, “Don’t touch the dog, it was just pepper sprayed.” Keep in mind that an unlicensed commercial cannabis operation in the county is supposed to be a $500 misdemeanor.
On May 1-2, 2023, police Trinity County The Sheriff’s Office obtained a search warrant in the Hayfork and Trinity Pines area. Agents with the Northern State Major Crime Investigation Team, Cal Fire, the Trinity County Environmental Health Department, and victim attorneys with the Trinity County District Attorney’s Office assisted in the operation.
SF portal reports Pot grower Nhia Pao Yang is not a native English speaker. But the officers shouted orders in English, and he walked towards them with his hands up. One of the officers at the scene approached one of the officers, who shot the dog.
The police report describes the dogs as “aggressive,” using the word three times, claiming that the dogs were trained to attack.
“While serving a search warrant on Nhia Yang’s property, investigators came across Yang who had five aggressive dogs on the property,” read the press release, which was posted on Facebook. Nhia Yang, did not comply with the investigators and tried to distance the investigators from him by standing near one of the aggressive dogs. When the investigators moved to arrest Nhia Yang, one of the aggressive dogs attempted to attack an interrogator who defended himself by firing a single shot at the dog. The injured dog was taken to a local veterinary clinic where he died Nhia Yang of Hayfork, CA was arrested for illegal marijuana cultivation, possession of marijuana for sale, and resisting arrest.”
Saxon said the dog was killed by a Cal Fire employee and that Cal Fire is investigating.
Yang was later charged with illegal possession of cannabis, lack of licenses for dogs, rabies vaccinations, unreasonable restraint of an animal, allowing a dog to attack or injure a person, and resisting arrest.
California dual license chaos
According to DCC records, the Yang family has a state license for their family’s small farm, and they were in the process of obtaining a license under Trinity County.
Proposition 64 created a dual licensing system that required farms to obtain both state and local approvals to grow commercial hemp. Los Angeles Times Reports indicate that thousands of farms in Trinity County remain unlicensed. License applicants in 2021 were told to start over, when local residents persuaded a judge to overturn the county’s cannabis licensing system because it did not include an environmental review.
The DCC then issued a letter reassuring farmers that it would take no action against those who lost their local licenses because of the ruling.
Even the Sheriff’s Office admits that the dual licensing system is not currently in operation.
Trinity County Sheriff Tim Saxon told L.L.C Los Angeles Times. The dual license system, he said, “puts many sheriffs in an uncomfortable position, myself included.”