What started as an investigation by Department of Natural Resources (DNR) officers into an illegal turtle selling operation ... yes, turtles .. .turned into a drug arrest for a Monroe resident, according to Monroe Town Marshal Dio Hernandez.
Hernandez told the Monroe Town Council Thursday he was contacted last week by the DNR regarding reports of a Monroe resident, whose name was not given, illegally selling turtles. Hernandez said he did not know what type of turtle was allegedly being sold, but said it was "the kind of turtle you just can't raise in your home or capture in the wild and sell it."
Hernandez said as DNR officials were investigating, they discovered marijuana plants inside the residence, which led to the arrest of at least one occupant of the home. Since this was a DNR investigation, Hernandez did not have the name of the individual arrested and no further information was available.
In other news, Hernandez said he has received reports of an individual exposing himself to members of the Amish Community in the vicinity of 200E and 300S. The suspect vehicle is described as a small black SUV. Anyone with information about this crime is asked to call the Monroe Police Department at (260) 692-6215.
In maintenance matters, Hernandez told the council the transmission on the town's police cruiser needs to be rebuilt. He has used his personal vehicle for the past few weeks while receiving estimates for the repair, which came to about $1,500 and comes with a two year, 24,000 mile warranty, according to Hernandez.
Adding to the department's equipment trouble Hernandez reported the radar detector inside the cruiser is no longer working. Hernandez said he is waiting to hear from MPH Industries who provide the radar equipment, which is seven years old, to see if the radar can be repaired at a lower cost. The cost to replace the radar is approximately $1,600, according to Hernandez.
The council approved the request to repair the transmission, 3-0, and will wait to hear from Hernandez as to whether the radar equipment can be repaired before taking action on that matter.