‘She smelled skunk:’ Man arrested after pot plants found by disabled wife in basement

Michael Larose

TOWN OF NORWAY — A man was arrested and he now faces drug charges after prosecutors say his disabled wife went down into the basement of their Town of Norway home for the first time in years, and soon led deputies to marijuana plants.

Michael Larose, 53, faces the following charges:

  • Manufacture/deliver THC (less than 200 grams)
  • Maintaining a drug trafficking place
  • Possession of THC
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia

According to a criminal complaint, on Sept. 28, a deputy was dispatched to a home on S. Loomis Rd. in the Town of Norway, where they spoke with Larose’s wife. She indicated she’s disabled and Larose served as her caretaker — paid by the state. She said her husband was taken into custody on Sept. 27, after she went down into the basement “to stop the dryer from running.” She said because of her disability, she hadn’t been in the basement for years.

She told investigators while she was down there, “she smelled skunk and got scared,” so she called deputies.

The home was searched, and the complaint says investigators found four marijuana plants in the basement, which tested positive for THC. They were surrounded by “aluminum foil covered panels and fluorescent lights.” Larose’s wife said her husband sleeps on the couch, and there, investigators found a marijuana pipe and a small bag with a green plant-type substance. They also found a glass case with a bag of marijuana in it, a pill bottle with marijuana in it and another marijuana pipe. Investigators recovered a metal container with numerous drug paraphernalia from a TV tray, along with a pay stub belonging to Larose.

Larose made his initial appearance in court in this case on Feb. 13. Probable cause was found for further proceedings, and a preliminary hearing was set for Feb. 28.

A $5,000 signature bond was set.