Police found cannabis in child's bedroom in Leek
POLICE found a mini cannabis factory when they went to arrest a man on an unrelated matter.
Officers could smell the class B drug when they attended Kelvin Wheeldon's home in Leek on December 8, North Staffordshire magistrates heard yesterday.
Prosecutor Andrew Bodger said: "Police arrested the defendant for something completely different.
"The officer could smell the defendant was smelling of cannabis when they set off for the Northern Area Custody Facility.
"Other officers carried out the search of the address.
"They went in a child's bedroom and opened a wardrobe door and found cannabis cuttings hanging and more in a shoe box.
"They could also smell cannabis in the loft area.
"They described it as an overwhelming smell of cannabis."
The court heard officers found cannabis drying out on three coat hangers.
In the loft they found two makeshift tents containing lights.
And a carrier bag with cannabis cuttings was found in the kitchen along with a set of scales.
In total police found four cannabis plants and four cropped plants.
In his police interview, Wheeldon said the cannabis was for his own personal use.
He said he used it as he had joint pain and also to help him sleep as he could not switch off at nights.
The defendant said the scales belonged to his girlfriend and were used for baking.
He added he did not supply anyone with cannabis.
The defendant, aged 28, of Prince Charles Avenue, Leek, pleaded guilty to producing cannabis.
Hamish Noble, mitigating, said Wheeldon, who has no previous convictions for drugs matters, grew the cannabis for his own personal use.
"It was cheaper to grow his own than to buy cannabis on the market and he made a decision to grow the plants," said Mr Noble.
He said there were eight plants in total and the cannabis was in his child's room as the youngster was away on holiday.
Mr Noble added that the proceedings have been a wake up call for the defendant.
Magistrates fined Wheeldon £110 and ordered him to pay £85 costs and a £20 victim surcharge.
They also ordered the forfeiture and destruction of the drugs and equipment.