The Merced County Sheriff warned farmer Chad Crivelli of Dos Palos not to grow what he claimed was hemp.
And when it was tested, the Merced Sun-Star reported:
"The THC content of the plants growing on the Crivelli farmland tested eight times the legal limit of what is allowed in hemp, according to Merced County Sheriff Deputy Daryl Allen."
"We want folks to know that California has marijuana laws. If you abide by those laws, you'll be free to do what you're going to do. Merced County has an ordinance pertaining to marijuana, however, when 194 acres is planted on the pretense that it's hemp, it cause some concern," (Sheriff) Warnke said.
"The presence of local, state and federal law enforcement officers makes a very strong statement that this grow is illegal under anybody's law, state and federal, said US Attorney for the Eastern District of California McGregor Scott.
News of the monster grow had reached all the way to Santa Cruz, and people from there were coming to Dos Palos to steal the alleged "hemp."
Crivelli, who won the coveted High Cotton Award in 2013, is a third generation cotton grower from a well respected west side farming family, known for developing sustainable cotton-growing techniques.
If Crivelli gets off lightly, will it go down as the The Hemp Defense?
Andrew Kuhn, Merced Sun-Star, Nov. 6, 2018
Harry Cline, Delta-Farm Press, Jan, 8, 2013.