After receiving information from a confidential informant, police investigated the allegations and arrested Luis Silva, 41, on March 3 for growing marijuana inside his cottage in the 200 block of Shadow Way. He was also cited for driving with a suspended license.
According to Miami-Dade County records, Silva has a lengthy criminal past that goes back to 1990 and includes arrests for burglary, grand theft and cannabis possession.
Bordering the alley behind a larger home, the south side yard of Silva’s box-like cottage was filled with junk, including stacks of worn tires, rusted electric fans, a cannibalized jet ski, broken furniture, generator and a tank of nitrogen, which is often used to stimulate the growth of marijuana.
As a caged pit bull quietly ignored all the commotion, police found a pile of mulch with three freshly cut stalks of marijuana next to a fence.
Inside the residence, police found items commonly used in grow houses, including heat lamps, fertilizer, irrigation equipment, insulation boards and pamphlets on hydroponics. Although children’s toys were found inside the cottage, police said Silva, the father of two, lived alone.
Police brought in an FPL worker and learned someone had tampered with the electrical system and was diverting power from the main house to the cottage. A Miami Springs Code Enforcement officer deemed the residence uninhabitable until electrical problems were corrected.
According to a report, inside a closet police found six hanging marijuana plants totaling about 515 grams with a value of $1,200.
“He told me the equipment we found was mostly from when he was busted in 2012 for having a grow house,” said Detective Ray Tamargo. “But he was definitely growing.”