WEEKI WACHEE — Someone stormed into a home here Tuesday morning, the residents of the house told authorities, seemingly intent on stealing from them.
One of the people in the house managed to get away and run for help to a neighbor, who happens to be a Hernando County sheriff's deputy. The deputy responded, calling the department to report the home invasion.
When deputies arrived, the people inside the house told them they had been robbed — of between 3 and 5 pounds of pot, according to an arrest report.
During the investigation, authorities said they found 59 marijuana plants growing inside the residence at 11480 Manassas Ave. They also found cultivated marijuana, irrigation equipment, ventilation equipment and other items associated with growing pot.
At least three of the five suspects said they knew about the marijuana plants, while one said she didn't know the plants were marijuana. Deputies took all five of them into custody.
Arrested were Wilson Rodriguez, 40, of Tampa; Edilberto Escobar Serrano, 25, of Weeki Wachee; Javier Verde, 35, of Miami; Jarol Zamora-Herrera, 34, unknown; and Batista Pena Yunet, 25, of Weeki Wachee.
All five suspects were charged with felony cultivation of marijuana.
They were taken to the Hernando County Jail and held in lieu of $5,000 bail.
Sgt. Donna Black, a spokeswoman with the Sheriff's Office, said the investigation was ongoing and that more charges in the case are expected.
She declined to provide further details.