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Medical Pot Producer Leaving County

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By Carol Hopkins

For the Daily Tribune


Big Daddy’s Hydro operator says patients were harassed


OAK PARK — A few desks, stray files and a large poster with a marijuana leaf are about all that remained inside Big Daddy’s Hydro facility here Friday.


The medical marijuana operation — possibly the last of its kind in Oakland County — will be closed up by Monday.


Rick Thompson, editor of Michigan Medical Marijuana Magazine and a member of Big Daddy’s Management Group, spoke of a raid on the medical marijuana facility and hydroponics store in January.


“That raid only hardened our resolve to stay,” he said.


“We were determined to fight it out, but now there are charges filed against (four) individuals and our patients finding themselves challenged in the street (by law enforcement) after leaving us. We can’t in good conscience remain.”


The 6,000-square-foot building situated in an industrial park opened in March 2010. Seventeen people worked there, said Thompson.


“We were open six days a week,” said Thompson. On days when a physician was in, “we were quite busy,” he said.


Now the operations will be concentrated in Big Daddy’s Management facilities in Chesterfield Township, Sandusky (Michigan), Burton and Detroit. The corporate office will be in Detroit, he said.


Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard responded to the move.


“People who are within the law have no problem with us and we have no problem with them,” he said.


“Profiteering attorneys and dispensaries keep picking fights with us instead of following the law.”


Thompson said a raid by law enforcement this week had nothing to do with the move-out.


“Our decision was made prior to that,” he said. “However, it reinforced our decision as a smart one.”


Law enforcement entered Big Daddy’s at least twice in the last year.


In January, officers raided the business, seizing money but making no arrests.


“They were courteous to the 10 patients and employees, and even let one pregnant woman go to the bathroom.”


At that time Undersheriff Michael McCabe said some undercover officers wore masks to conceal their identity. He said the raid was the result of a months-long investigation.


McCabe said the Sheriff’s Office arrested drug dealers who were selling marijuana out of their homes. The dealers told the Sheriff’s Office that they were “purchasing all their marijuana at Big Daddy’s and then selling (from their homes) illegally,” said McCabe.


McCabe said officers seized 9 pounds of harvested marijuana, 5 pounds of packaged marijuana, 10 pounds of baked goods with marijuana, documents, a digital scale and a laptop computer. An informant had made undercover purchases at the dispensary and that person “was buying from other patients in the facility,” said McCabe.


On Aug. 31, Thompson said Oak Park police came to the business on Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. looking for two patients and returned at 10 a.m. to arrest them.


Four people eventually were charged with conspiracy and delivery of marijuana, he said.


Thompson said the incidents were reactionary, coming after state court decisions issued marijuana-related decision.



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wonder if people even get that they came in made everyone empty the money out of thier pockets and took the rest of the money in the place and left. sounds just like a robbery to me if I came in and did that it would be called armed robbery!


Sad and funny, no arrests are made, but what happens to all the property that is seized? Does anyone really know if any product, inventory, or equipment ever goes back; especially if there are NO ARRESTS?

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