Overflowing Toilet Uncovers Drug Operation

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DICKSON CITY -- You wouldn't necessarily think to call police and firefighters when a toilet overflows but one woman in Lackawanna County did and cops ended up finding a full-blown marijuana growing operation as a result.

It wasn't what police and firefighters expected to find when they came to the apartment building in Dickson City late Thursday night. One of the downstairs apartments is nearly destroyed because of that overflowed toilet. When police checked out the plumbing upstairs, they found a lot of marijuana.

"I was just laying right there. I had just turned the TV off to go to bed at night."

Just as Sherri Lyman had gotten up to go to bed, she says her ceiling turned into a small waterfall of toilet water that left a lot of damage. But this story got a lot more complicated after the toilet in the apartment above hers overflowed.

"The guy stuck his head out the window and said his toilet was overflowing and that's all we heard. Then it was just crazy," said Carla Learn of Dickson City.   cody turner dc drugs

That guy was Cody Turner, 19. He lives in the apartment upstairs and now faces criminal charges, not for his dysfunctional toilet, but for what police and firefighters say they found when they went to check the plumbing.

Dickson City police now have several pot plants at their station seized as evidence, along with a gas mask and notes on how to grow marijuana. They say Turner and a friend were growing the drug in turner's bedroom and they tried to keep cops from seeing it when the toilet overflowed.

Turner was charged and taken to prison.

His downstairs neighbors were left with a big mess. Lyman and her daughter live there because they were displaced by a fire six months ago so she says it seems bad luck is following her. But one lucky thing did happen Lyman says: that she called the fire department when her landlord didn't pick up.

"Thank the Lord last night when the police came. Something was finally done. I am happy about that. At least they responded."

A contractor was on site fixing up the mess Friday but there is no word on when Sherri Lyman will be able to move back in.

Cody Turner is staying at the Lackawanna County Prison facing several drug charges. His bail is set at $10,000.

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