Suspects Arrested in Home Filled With Pot Plants, Shrooms, and Exotic Animals May Have Deliberately Set Building on Fire

marijuana-plant-bud-macro.jpg
Photo by jasonawhite via Flickr

Arson pros are calling this a "suspicious" blaze: A fire broke out at a Long Beach residence shortly after three men were arrested there on drug charges. Inside the house, officers serving a search warrant found drugs of all kinds, as well as a menagerie of exotic pets.

The search warrant was ordered when gang officers working the area in pursuit of a suspect noticed evidence of marijuana growing at the home, according to City News Service.

According to Long Beach Police Department Police Sgt. Tomothy Long, authorities wound up confiscating 22 growing marijuana plants (nine from a shed and 13 within the house) along with "suspected psilocybin mushrooms and peyote cactus, another hallucinogen, and some dried marijuana." The drugs, however, are believed to have been for personal use, and not for sale.

"We had several different rooms that had clandestine labs for hallucinogens, mushrooms, peyote, things of that nature, and a separate lab with the cultivation of the marijuana," said Long.

Also in the house were some pets: Four boa constrictors, three tarantulas and a scorpion. Those critters are now with Animal Control.

The fire broke out about 45 minutes after the three men inside the home, all in their 20s, were arrested. Authorities say they found evidence an accelerant was used.

The suspects names have not been released. They are facing various drug-related charges. It is not known if all three lived at the residence, which was damaged in the blaze, but not destroyed.