Elgin man charged with growing pot after tenant's social media post
A 52-year-old Elgin man was charged with possessing and growing marijuana in his backyard after authorities were called to his home after one of his tenants posted suicidal statements online.
Joseph M. Blundell, of the 1400 block of Harlan Avenue, is charged with manufacture/delivery of up to 500 grams of marijuana, possession of 30 to 500 grams of marijuana, and growing between five and 20 marijuana plants, all felonies, according to Kane County court records.
Blundell was arrested after police received a 911 call about 6:30 a.m. Sunday that a friend made suicidal statements on Facebook.
Authorities traced a cellphone number to Blundell's home and an officer peeked in a bedroom window and saw a man on a bed in a fetal position with a gun on the floor next to him, according to an Elgin police report.
"Also in the fenced-in backyard of the residence there were eight cannabis sativa plants in various stages of growth," the report read.
Police surrounded the home and had Blundell and others come out. They determined the man on the bed -- who was renting a room from Blundell -- was not harmed, the report said. Authorities later obtained a search warrant and seized cash, plastic bags, a scale and 57.3 grams -- or about two ounces -- of packaged marijuana.
Police said Blundell admitted the plants were his and he occasionally sells to friends but "was not a drug dealer."
If convicted of the most severe felony charge, Blundell could face a punishment ranging from probation to up to five years in prison.
He has no previous felony arrests or convictions in Kane County, records show, and is due in court Oct. 19.