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Garbage truck crashes into building in Sterling Heights, reveals marijuana grow operation


STERLING HEIGHTS, Mich. (WXYZ) – A GFL garbage truck has crashed into a building in Sterling Heights, revealing an illegal marijuana grow operation.

On Wednesday morning, the truck was heading south on Mound Road, approaching 15 Mile Road. The responsible vehicle had a red light and turned southbound on Mound Road, just north of 15 Mile Road.

Police said the garbage truck must have swerved but still struck the responsible vehicle and continued to cross the median onto Mound Road. The garbage truck crossed the northbound lanes of Mound Road, where the driver avoided oncoming traffic and struck the building.

Mike Palmieri owns the business next door, and his camera captured the moment that revealed skunk surgery. “We knew something was going on next door, but we were neighbors who stayed together. But when the whoppers weren’t cooking, you could smell them,” said Mike Palmieri, owner of Palmieri Concrete.

Mike added that the smell coming from the building was pungent. “And anytime after 10:30 am it was gone. But if you were here in the evening or in the morning, it smelled like skunk all morning.”

Investigators at the scene told 7 Action News that there were around 60 marijuana plants inside. It is one of many illegal cultivation operations the city has dismantled. According to the authorities, the building was rented to two people. Seven Action News tried to contact the owner of the building but only received a voicemail message.

Police say this illegal cultivation operation goes against national and local codes, causing real dangers to the building and the businesses around it.

And for Mike and his company, he says, when there is drug activity, there is also crime. “If people want it and if they know it’s there. They’re going to get it one way or another. Especially with the tough times we’re going through today.”

Sterling Heights Police are actively investigating this matter.

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