Worcester man accused of having marijuana grow operation

By WKTV News

(WKTV) - A Worcester man was arrested Wednesday after the Otsego County Sheriff's Office's said they located a marijuana grow operation at his home.

Richard William Compitello, 47, of Reservoir Road in Worcester, is charged with felony criminal possession of marijuana in the first degree, and misdemeanor charges of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree, criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree and unlawfully growing of cannabis by an unlicensed person.

According to officials, a joint investigation by the sheriff's office criminal investigation division, special agents out of the Drug Enforcement Agency's Albany Division Office and the DEA's Northeast Aviation Resident Office was launched after the sheriff's office received a tip of a possible grow operation at Compitello's home in the Town of Decatur.

On Wednesday, sheriff's investigators and Albany DEA special agents interviewed Compitello at his home and searched his house, outbuildings and property. New York State Parole Officers from Utica and the DEA Northeast Aviation Resident Office assisted with the search.

According to authorities, Compitello had about six pounds of dried marijuana packaged for sale in heat-sealed or plastic baggies inside of his home. Authorities also say they found about 10 grams of psilocybin mushrooms, a digital electronic scale, a blackjack, a dagger, $1,688 in U.S. currency, assorted fireworks, numerous loaded high-powered rifles and shotguns and a video surveillance system of his property. Authorities say in a separate building on Compitello's property, an active hydroponics grow operation with 17 marijuana plants, more than a pound of loose marijuana, a loaded .22-caliber lever action rifle and chemicals and other items used in the cultivation and propagation of marijuana were found. The value of the marijuana seized was more than $35,000.

Compitello was sent to the Otsego County Correctional Facility on $2,500 bail. If convicted, he faces up to five years in prison.

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