Asian cannabis growers face sheriff raids, bulldozers in Northern California. They blame racism

The Sacramento Bee reports on authorities turning off water supplies to  illegal growers  in Siskiyou County although the move seems to be catching other farmers in the one size fits all net

Day after day, sheriff’s deputies drive up and down the road outside Steve Griset’s 600-acre farm, pulling over anyone who appears to be hauling water for the thousands of marijuana greenhouses that have taken over the countryside here.

Griset has become a target, even though he grows alfalfa. Last year, investigators with the Siskiyou County District Attorney’s Office raided Griset’s house with a search warrant looking for his business records, and the DA followed up with a lawsuit in civil court.

Griset’s alleged transgressions? He was selling water from his well to his pot-farming neighbors, immigrants of Hmong descent who have helped turn this sparsely populated, volcanic-soiled section of California into a major source of cannabis production.

After someone entered Griset’s property during the night and damaged his well pump with an ax earlier this month, it became clear he was caught in an escalating conflict in Siskiyou County that has raised fevered complaints about anti-Asian harassment, environmental destruction, and unequal enforcement of California’s complex cannabis laws.

“They’re around my ranch almost all the time,” he said of the sheriff’s department. “It’s really intimidating.”


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