Police: YMCA board member accused of growing pot

by: Ken Lemon Updated:

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SHELBY, N.C. —

Police said they found marijuana plants growing on property near a YMCA in Shelby and the suspected grower is a man who was a board member for the Christian organization.
 
Police told Eyewitness News reporter Ken Lemon someone spotted the plants in a wooded area and called the YMCA.
 
Years ago, someone donated 11 acres of land to the Dover YMCA.
 
The undeveloped tract of land is about a block away from the YMCA but it is not far away from a business owned by Drew Beam, former YMCA board member who was charged with growing the pot.
 
Beam was appointed to the Dover YMCA Board of Directors two years ago.
 
He sent an email Thursday to apologize for the negative attention brought on the YMCA and he resigned his seat.
 
The CEO of the YMCA said he is disappointed and called the situation unfortunate.
 
Shelby police said it's unclear if Beam knew the land belonged to the YMCA.
 
They got the tip and investigated for two weeks.
 
"We began a covert operation as to who was growing the marijuana and who was maybe tending to it," said Lt. Shannon Price with the Shelby police.
 
They will not say how much they found but they are certain that Beam is responsible.

Police said his status in the community did not impact their investigation.

"Our goal is to treat everybody the same," Price said.

They are not sure why the plants were grown there.

Beam's attorney said neither he nor Beam will speak publicly about the arrest.

Beam has a court date next week on the charges.

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