Lightning Strike Leads Cops to Pot-Filled House




Of all the random occurrences that could blow up your homespun pot growing operation, a lightning strike is perhaps the least likely. Someone has loose lips? That happens. A neighbor sees something they shouldn't through the windows? Happens too.

But an act of God? A lightning strike? Man, that sucks.

On May 7, 2010, a storm struck Anthony Masiello's Mantua home. The lightning caught the roof on fire, a fact that caused neighbors to call 911, which was exactly not what Masiello was hoping would happen. Firefighters arrived to find 102 marijuana plants growing in his basement.

According to, he accepted full responsibility in court this week.

“He could have lied and tried to obstruct the investigation, but he did not,” assistant prosecutor Michniak said, pointing out the “strange nature of the discovery” of Masiello’s illegal operation.

Defense attorney Gregory Gentile said the charges in a July 2010 Portage County grand jury indictment were Masiello’s “only involvement in felony behavior” in his lifetime.

“To say he is embarrassed and understands the severity of his actions is an understatement,” Gentile said. “He certainly regrets everything he’s done to be in this courtroom today.”

Masiello was given two years probation.

As for the lightning, we'll just assume God was trying to fire one up.


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