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Police: Manteca man was making concentrated pot

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Police: Manteca man was making concentrated pot

This is some of the concentrated cannabis Manteca Police seized.

JASON CAMPBELL/The Bulletin


POSTED August 1, 2013 1:41 a.m.

Manteca Police detectives had a hunch they’d find something in the Manteca home of David Crabtree Wednesday afternoon.

They just didn’t think that it would end up being a hash-producing operation that yielded more than 2 pounds of the concentrated cannabis that was being cooked up in Pyrex containers.

Crabtree, 38, was arrested on multiple drug charges after the Manteca Police Street Crimes Unit discovered 45 marijuana plants, 20 pounds of processed marijuana and the cache of concentrated cannabis in his Manteca home. A tip allowed detectives to secure a search warrant. Police raided the home near Neil Hafley Elementary School.

He was taken into custody without incident.

Detectives also discovered a Toter full of marijuana leaves that were being discarded, as well as two cases of empty butane canisters that were believed to be used in the manufacturing process.

And it’s a process that can be  extremely dangerous.

While it’s not exactly the chemistry-laden course that is required for the manufacture of methamphetamine, the extended use of butane in an unventilated area can lead to explosive consequences. The gas, which is used to extract the THC-heavy oils from marijuana, is heavier than air and if unvented and exposed to an ignition source can detonate.

Earlier this year the Federal Emergency Management Agency issued a bulletin outlining how hash oil explosions were increasing across the United States – particularly in the western half of the country – and that the explosions, in some instances, had blown out windows and even walls in some residences. The explosions were so severe, according to the release, that they were even misidentified as exploding pipe bombs or meth labs. 

Crabtree is being charged with manufacturing of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance for sale, possession of concentrated cannabis and cultivation of marijuana. He was booked into San Joaquin County Jail.

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