Middleboro Fire in Alleged ‘Grow Operation’
Update: This article has been updated to show that the house involved in a Wareham Street fire is thought to have used for an illegal marijuana growing operation.
MIDDLEBORO — A large fire that ripped through a Middleboro home early this morning has been deemed a crime scene, after police and fire crews allegedly found a large marijuana grow operation, according to Middleboro Fire Chief Lance Benjamino.
Benjamino said that firefighters were called to 581 Wareham St. on Route 28 just after 6:30 a.m. Wednesday.
They arrived to find heavy flames coming out of the right hand side of the house, although the single male resident had been alerted by smoke alarms and had already evacuated the building.
No injuries were reported, Benjamino said.
Fire crews were on the scene for hours, and part of Route 28 between Locust and Pine Streets was closed.
The first responders discovered an alleged illegal marijuana grow operation inside the home while responding to the fire, officials said.
The Middleboro Police Department has seized several marijuana plants and growing equipment from the home.
Detectives are still counting the number of plants seized, but they said it exceeds the amount residents in one household are legally allowed to grow.
The investigation remains ongoing and no charges have been filed at this time.
Benjamino said that access to the single family home was complicated by a "clutter situation," but firefighters were able to enter through a window to combat the blaze.
They managed to get the fire under control in an hour and 15 minutes, the fire chief said.
Damage to the home was estimated at around $150,000, and the man has been displaced, but is being helped by the Red Cross.