A Facebook laugh led to a pot cultivation bust of a Missouri college professor last week.
Matthew Rouch, 57, who is a professor at Northwest Missouri State University, allegedly posted an alarming message on the wall of a friend that stated, "By October I'll be wanting to get up to the top of the bell tower with a high-powered rifle -- with a good scope, and probably a gatling [sic] gun as well."
Most likely joking, Rouch probably never meant that he would actually do such a thing. We hope. The message did raise concerns with University Police, who arrested Rouch last Thursday for making a terrorist threat. Rouch was held for 24 hours until Friday morning when police said they wouldn't charge him because they didn't believe he was really threatening anyone. But, just to be sure, the presiding judge ordered a weapons search of Rouch's home.
You guessed it: During a search for weapons at Rouch's home, police say they found around a dozen marijuana plants as well as pot paraphernalia, but no guns. Police still decided to charge Rouch, who has been placed on leave from the University, with production of a controlled substance and felony possession of a controlled substance.
Depending on how much dried pot he had on him, Rouch could be facing anywhere from one to 15 years in prison. Likely, his charges fall within the 35 grams to 30 kilograms range, which comes with a year in prison and $20,000 in fines. If he had more than 100 kilograms on him, he could be facing life.