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Car Crashes Into Wall Of Home, Leading To Discovery Of Marijuana Grow House In Westchester

A grow house was discovered in Yonkers following a motor vehicle crash. Photo Credit: Yonkers Police Department
A grow house was discovered in Yonkers following a motor vehicle crash. Photo Credit: Yonkers Police Department
A grow house was discovered in Yonkers following a motor vehicle crash. Photo Credit: Yonkers Police Department
A grow house was discovered in Yonkers following a motor vehicle crash. Photo Credit: Yonkers Police Department
Lena M. Shleiwet. Photo Credit: Yonkers Police Department
Edward S. Shleiwet Photo Credit: Yonkers Police Department

A seemingly innocuous one-car crash into a Westchester building led to the discovery of a marijuana grow house, police said.

Members of the Yonkers Police Department were dispatched to a two-family home on Shonnard Place shortly before 3 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 7, where there was a report of a driver who had struck the building.

Upon arrival, police said that officers found a 2016 Volkswagen, which had struck the south facing brick wall of the home and was lodged halfway into the structure. 

The driver, a 31-year-old Bronx resident whose name was not released was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment on minor injuries. Police said that he lost control while negotiating the turn on Park Avenue and struck the home.

Yonkers Police Sgt. Dean Politopoulos said that members of the Yonkers Fire Department, Building Department, and local utility companies responded to inspect damage to the structure and check electric and gas lines for damage and continued safe operation. 

While inspecting the premises, officials discovered evidence and paraphernalia indicative of a marijuana grow house operation, including 29 potted marijuana plants and 4 large hanging LED lamps located outside the home at the rear of the driveway.

Further investigation determined that the lower level of the home was being used as an alleged grow house. Politopoulos said a downstairs room was converted into a makeshift greenhouse, with plastic tarps covering the walls and a large ventilation system attached to the ceiling. 

During their search of the home, police seized loose marijuana, marijuana seeds, packed marijuana, cannabis powder, high concentrate cannabis, cannabis vape cartridges, a digital scale and cash. In total, 31 potted marijuana plants were recovered, “including the 29 that were apparently placed outside the home at the time of the accident in an apparent effort to disassociate the home from the evidence.

Several pounds of marijuana were seized during the execution of multiple search warrants.

The two homeowners, Edward Shleiwet, 37 and Lena Shleiwet, 35, were arrested and charged with criminal possession of marijuana, and two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance. Their case is being prosecuted by the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office.

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