Naples man ‘proud’ of pot operation after bust
NAPLES: The Naples man accused of converting his home into a marijuana grow house says he’s been growing and smoking pot for years.
“I’m high right now. I smoke every day and I have since I was 12 years old,” Stephen Vanalphen said Monday.
While many people keep pictures of their loved ones stowed in albums, Vanalphen, 43, instead, keeps snapshots of his grows.
“Maybe growing weed is illegal, but smoking weed, there is nothing wrong with that,” he said.
Both acts are illegal, and Vanalphen knows it first hand.
The self-titled gardener was arrested last week after a mold inspector found something else growing inside his Naples apartment.
“I’m proud and not embarrassed of what I do, so I let the mold guy in; he called 911,” Vanalphen said.
That led Naples Police to two closets full of pot plants.
Now the evidence and grow equipment is gone, but Vanalphen says that won’t stop him.
“I’m sticking to my guns. I have, I did, I will continue to do exactly what I do, the way I do it. Not here,” he said.
According to the police report and Vanalphen, air ducts were re-routed inside the apartment to let any fumes from the plants outside through the laundry vent.
Vanalphen says he’s been growing professionally for six years, saying he doesn’t trust those who sell on the street.
“They’re irresponsible, undependable. They’re scumbags. They’re drug dealers!” Vanalphen said.
The self-proclaimed smoker says he doesn’t intend to quit.
“I do smoke marijuana, and I will not stop. Short of being incarcerated, I will not stop,” Vanalphen said.