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Osage woman gets 30 days in marijuana case

These marijuana plants were seized in a bust by seven law enforcement agencies last year. (Photo courtesy Hubbard County Sheriff's Department)1 / 2
Molly Rose Riewer2 / 2

PARK RAPIDS -- The youngest defendant in a major marijuana growing operation was sentenced Monday to 30 days in jail for her role in the case.

Molly Rose Riewer, 23, of Osage, was arrested in May 2009 near Two Inlets in a sophisticated hydroponic marijuana operation at a rural residence. She was one of four people arrested.

In a plea deal entered into in July 2009, Riewer agreed to testify against her three co-defendants, whose cases were transferred to federal court.

"Her life has changed completely since that arrest," her court-appointed attorney told Judge Paul Rasmussen.

"She is no longer in a relationship with one of the defendants," Jennifer Nelson said in court.

"This was a rather large operation," Hubbard County Attorney Don Dearstyne said. "She was a small player in it."

Seven state, federal and local law enforcement agencies were involved in the bust, seizing 97 growing marijuana plants, 402 harvested plants and laboratory equipment.

Besides Riewer, James B. Young, 68; his wife, Talora A. Smith, 63, who were the property residents, and Tyler C. Englund, 48, of Park Rapids, were arrested.

Dearstyne said he was notified recently the three federal defendants have reached plea deals, but said he didn't know the particulars of their pleas.

A spokesperson with the U.S. Attorney's office in Minneapolis did not respond to a call for information on the federal cases by press time.

Riewer has a job and cares for numerous animals, Nelson told the judge in seeking a suspended sentence. Rasmussen said he has no objection to a work release sentence that would allow Riewer to continue working and care for the animals.

She was also assessed $300 to reimburse some of the costs of prosecution, cannot use drugs or fraternize with people who do and must submit to periodic drug testing.

"It's in your hands at this point," the judge advised Riewer.

"Good luck."