LAWWRENCE COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – The 33-year old Amish man who is now facing drug and weapons charges was not born into the Amish community. Detectives told News 2 he joined several years ago.
“From talking to him, he said he moved down here seven years ago and joined the Amish community,” said Jason Jantke, a detective for Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office. “He just wanted to kind of slow down and live the slow life of the Amish community.”
Chris Appleby faces four criminal charges after detectives found 25 pounds of suspected marijuana, 13 weapons and cash at his home in the Amish community in the northern part of Lawrence County.
“To be honest with you, my partners and I were mind-boggled by how it was right there,” said Detective Jantke. “You never hear anything bad come out of the Amish per se. There’s bad apples in every crowd, but never thought it would be this big, especially with this amount of marijuana.”
Detectives said they received complaints from within the Amish community about Appleby.
“Normally the Amish community handles things within themselves,” said Jantke. “I can’t go into what the complaints were, but it was enough for us to look into it, and while looking into it, we did get probable cause to execute a search warrant.”
Jantke said detectives found a fully functional greenhouse where Appleby grew and dried marijuana, preparing it to be sold.
“Also on the property, he had a shed with a bunch of equipment inside of it that helps dry down the marijuana and break it down so it can be processed and put into storage. His storage was a lot of mason jars,” Jantke explained.
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Appleby was arrested Monday without incident. He is being held in the Lawrence County jail.