Riverside Firefighters Find Grow Operation After Extinguishing Structure Fire

CalFire firefighters discovered a different kind of fire than they were expecting to find after being called to extinguish a small blaze in the Lake Matthews area of Riverside County during the weekend.

On the morning of Sunday, January 19, CalFire personnel responded to a structure fire on Bienvenidos Way in Lake Matthews.

Deputies from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department, Perris Station were called to assist CalFire at 7:04 a.m.

After quickly extinguishing the flames, firefighters uncovered an unlicensed cannabis growing operation on the premises.

Deputies and investigators from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Marijuana Eradication Team responded to the location and served a search warrant.

During the service of the warrant, investigators found more than 7,400 cannabis plants at the location in various stages of growth.

A shotgun was also found on the premises and confiscated, but no arrests were made at the time of the incident.

The Sunday incident marked the second unlicensed cannabis growing operation that the Riverside County Sheriffs Department discovered and shut down in the past few days.

At around noon on Friday, January 17, Southern California Edison notified deputies from the San Jacinto Sheriff’s Station Problem Oriented Policing Team about suspicious power readings in the 1100 block of Laurel Heights in the city of San Jacinto.

Deputies immediately opened an investigation and identified a possible grow house in the area.

Once a search warrant was issued for the location, deputies served it at 6:33 p.m.

A search of the house revealed approximately 1,800 cannabis plants in various stages of growth as well as 50 pounds of processed marijuana.

No arrests were made during the incident as deputies did not find anyone in the house at the time.

Investigations related to both the Lake Matthews and San Jacinto incidents are ongoing.