Citation: Anonymous. "Trouble With The DEA?: An Experience with Mushrooms (exp17895)". Erowid.org. Sep 17, 2005. erowid.org/exp/17895
About a week from yesterday, my girlfriend had just finished another day at the local junior college from which we were driving to her house from. We were both in a very good mood- she had just received a decent grade on an English 101 essay, and I had just scene a wonderful movie at my Film class, “The Four Feathers”. Anyway, to give you a little history on the two of us- neither of us are so called “heavy drug users”, I’ve dabbled into just about everything once or twice, but nothing in the way of addiction, and she has tried MDMA, LSD, Cocaine, and DXM, and uses Marijuana recreationally (just as I do).
I feel I should go a little further into my past to give you a clear picture of the circumstances. In the fall/winter of last year.
I had been growing mushrooms on a fairly large scale. I had 3 large terrariums with about 56 cakes (PFs, Hawaiians, Ecuadorians, and Stropharias) that were flushing quite regularly. I was yielding quite a bit per week. I come from a family of “live let live” 60s generation hippie parents (great people) who didn’t necessarily discourage my drug use, but wanted me to wait until a later age, until I got involved. So you can imagine when my mother found my high-tech humidified, timed, and ever so expensive and hand crafted terrariums buzzing away happily in my closet she become slightly perturbed, especially when the legal responsibility would have been on her back. I was 16 at the time. The result of that incident was a big blowout, ending in my temporary suspension from the house, immediate death of all my wonderful mushrooms/equipment (the equipment was dismantled and boxed up), and the promise that I could do whatever I wanted once I was 18, but that wasn’t good enough for me, so I stubbornly refused to abide by her rules (no drugs) and went to live with my sister for about a month.
Now skip ahead to the future (7-8 months) - I’m living at home again, all is well, my equipment is just sitting all boxed up in the laundry room, lonely and itching to be used. I should add that in all the time that had passed I had been placed on probation for a DUI, driving while high… well actually, I was more than high. The day I got arrested involved a mere 7 hits of Acid, about 5-7 bumps of Ketamine, 7 grams of Mushrooms, one box of Coricidin Cough & Cold (that’s 16 30mg DXM pills), 2 Yellow Alligators (the large multi-vitamin sized MDMA/Mescaline pellets) and two bowls of some high quality grass (Yeah, I know I fucked up really bad, it was stupid). Hell when I was driving down the freeway I saw a fucking dragon pop out of the pavement and swallow the car hole…
So anyway, this DUI put me on probation, and as some of you might know, this means that the local juvenile authorities are entitled to search the residents (my) house randomly to make sure he/she doesn’t possess any illegal or scheduled substances. My mom figured I better rid myself of the equipment to void myself from any legal technicalities. I agreed with her, but I didn’t want to just throw the stuff away. Hell that equipment took me about two months to save up for. It was damn near a $700.00 investment when it came down to it. So the next day, my girlfriend suggested that I store the equipment at her house. She said her parents would be none the wiser and it would be completely cool if we just kept it all boxed up in her closet. She said, “My mom never goes into my room, I swear”. So, I stupidly put her at risk (damn I wish I could somehow use my hein sight as foresight.) Although, later on we decided sense we weren’t going to become interested in the hobby again for quite some time, we might as well sell it to a friend of ours, or at least let him hold onto it and use it until we needed it back. The equipment, which entailed all the jars (some that still had vermiculite and brown rice flour in them but were not inoculated), syringes (full of fresh spores), and everything else you need and stuff you don’t to grow mushrooms, sat in her closet for about five days which brings us back to a week from yesterday.
So we pulled up to her house went inside. I was excited because I was nearly done with my pipe case that I was sewing. I like making cases for all my pipes, One. It gives them a personal touch, and Two. It further protects them from damage. So I’m sitting on her bed no longer then five minutes, she’s working on a homework assignment on her computer and her mom walks in with a very angry look on her face. On a side note, her mom is another hopelessly misinformed United States citizen who has so many negative prejudices about drugs and the culture I could fill a book with them. Also, she tends to truly HATE all who are affiliated. It’s Ironic that her daughter is one of them. She smugly says, “I’ve called some gentlemen to come down and talk to you guys about your little drug scheme” (she points to the closet). We say, “What scheme?” Not denying what the equipment is for, but we truly were not planning on growing any mushrooms, at least not until a far later time in our lives. Like when we’ve moved out of this drug bust/prosecution crazy country. She coldly says, “We’ll you can just tell that to the gentlemen.” I worriedly say, “Who exactly did you call?” She replies, with an almost evil and definitely haughty expression, “The gentlemen are from the DEA”.
Let’s break for a minute. First off, anyone who has ever had any previous legal complications, who is put in this situation is thinking in there mind, no matter who they are, “OH FUCK! FUCK! FUCK! FUCK!” You begin to sweat bullets and turn into a pile on the floor that is otherwise known as a nervous wreck. I’m an extremely white person naturally, but my girlfriend later told me that I was literally paper white. I turned pale. Damn near translucent. So, somehow my girlfriend is holding things together pretty well. I don’t think she knows what it’s like to be arrested and have your freedom taken away, etc… And she just responds with a fairly mellow “Okay, whatever.” While I’m about to panic and jump out the nearest window and run away.
Her mom leaves the room, but not before telling us the DEA agents wouldn’t be to the house for another two hours (They had to travel some distance). I immediately started pacing the room, thinking of ways to rid ourselves of the evidence (or to be evidence). Fortunately her mom stupidly trusted us enough to think we weren’t going to do anything to protect ourselves and that we would leave everything alone for the “DEA gentlemen” to look at, so all the equipment was still in the room. As soon as her mom stepped out the door, we grabbed the half full mason jars and began to flush the remains of the vermiculite/brown rice flour substrate (food for the 'to be' mushrooms, for those who don’t know) down the toilet, along with two full spore syringes. We successfully rid ourselves of five jars of half year old substrate. Fortunately, there were only five jars, so it didn’t take long.
At this point in time I’m still nervous as hell but I’m slightly more settled due to the fact, that I thought I had rid myself and my girlfriend from any true legal threat. I mean sure we had a lot of equipment, and it was obvious what it was for, but there wasn’t any solid strands of evidence, like jars full of viable substrate (which I thought at the time would mean definite intent).
So we’re still waiting, and waiting… and waiting, mixed with a small car trip that we were forced to go on with my girlfriend’s mother to pick up her sister from high school (she didn’t trust us to remain at the house by ourselves). That was about as awkward as hell. The trip included a huge argument between her and myself on the ethics of calling the DEA on your daughter before knowing anything about what you were doing or even before consulting her, or even calling them at all and keeping it a civil matter. I still think she wanted her daughter to get some jail time (my girlfriend and I still may, we don’t know yet), because when she discovered that we had voided ourselves of legal technicalities, she blew up and started to throw things, scream about how she wanted me dead, and how I was the route of all evil, etc.
When we returned we realized the waiting was over. A vehicle was parked in the driveway that obviously was the “DEA gentlemen”. We went inside and sat back down in her room expecting to be handcuffed and taken away as soon as they went into the room. The only surprising thing about them is that they weren’t dressed in suites with sun glasses as I expected the agents to be, it probably takes away from there ability to narc people out. So instead of suites and ties they had Levis and T-Shirts.
The agents were your typical, “Oh, we just want to help you guys out… but if you don’t tell us the truth your defiantly going to jail to be raped and tormented for a long time.” agents, who in actuality, like all government authorities were simply going for the jugular trying to get us for anything they could, to get “scum” like us off the street. I should add, by this point my girlfriend’s mom had learned of our success in destroying the “evidence”, and had informed the “gentlemen” of our doing so.
They first questioned us together. The discussion went something like this.
DEA Agent One: “Listen, you guys made a really bad mistake in destroying evidence. It was going to be just a simple sit down talk with you two, but now you’ve complicated things. We and your mom (looking at my girlfriend) didn’t expect you guys to do anything that fucking stupid like destroy evidence.” …
Me:“I’m not denying what this equipment had been for, I’m really not. I just want you to know that at no time had we been planning on growing anything with the equipment. And besides, I thought it wasn’t evidence, until you guys had made it so. I just wanted to rid of ourselves of legal technicalities, to prevent incidents like this. Also, we weren’t even planning on keeping it, a friend of ours wanted it, and so we were going to give it to him pretty soon. You see, I had a past where I was interested in this stuff, but no more.” …
DEA Agent Two: “Don’t play stupid with us kid. We know what your up too.” …
Me: “Whatever.” …
My Girlfriend: “(She said my name in a tone that suggested I should be more cooperative.) …
I should add that there was no way in hell I was going to make things easy for these Nazi Narcotics Fiends. I was having trouble being respectful (probably one of my problems as to why I get in so much trouble with authority figures).
So after a short discussion they decided they wanted to separate us and speak to us individually. I wasn’t worried, because what we were both saying was the truth. It wasn’t like we had to come with some huge and elaborate scheme that corresponded correctly, because we both knew what was to become of the equipment, and we both knew we weren’t going to use it. Even though this was the case, I know my 4th amendment rights, and I wasn’t going to give these agents anymore than necessary (I can’t speak for my girlfriend though, I don’t know how much information she ended up giving them. She is more easily intimidated and less experienced with cops/authority figures). At first I thought of not speaking at all, but when it seemed that they weren’t going to arrest us right off the bat, I figured maybe I could push them along on there marry way and give them just enough to not become overly pissed off, or get there egos involved, and then arrest us on some bullshit technicality that would easily turn over in court (but still it would be quite a hassle). I fucking hate that intimidation factor these Nazi thugs hold over you. Justice is anything but just, I SWEAR TO PAN THE FUCKING GOAT GOD!!!
I answered all there basically irrelevant questions like, “What kind of drugs have you done in the past?”, “What got you started into drugs?”, “Where do you live?”, “What’s your phone number?”, “Have you ever been arrested?” … But when they attempted to ask me questions like, “So, how long have you been growing Psychedelic Mushrooms”, I simply sat back in my chair, and said, “(NOT A GOD DAMN WORD)”. The only other things I really answered were questions regarding the information I had already given them. Such as, “So what’s the name of the guy you planned on giving the equipment too?” I said, “I’m not going to give you his name, it’s irrelevant.” And then we would continue talking again, and the agent would try to be tricky, he would slowly bring up our friend again in a subtle way and say, “Oh, yeah. So what did you say his last name was again?” And of course that didn’t work, and I said, “I didn’t give you his last name, I didn’t give you a first name, I didn’t give you any name.” You can always tell when they get angry: when there little tricks don’t work, because then they use there only other trick which is threatening arrest.
After the dual interview went on for about 10-15 minutes they both compared notes with each other. I guess they must have figured the two stories were consistent, both of them basically confirming what I had said earlier because they didn’t say anything in regard to the questioning to either one of us. My girlfriend’s mom was pacing wildly in the living room, fuming her anger in every way she could I imagine, likely thinking of the many ways she could make my life more miserable.
Agent number one took us back into my girlfriend’s room and began to speak to us while agent number two went into the living room to call headquarters and scan our records to make sure there weren’t any warrants out for our arrest (of course there wasn’t, my DUI didn’t even show up). He said he was going to take all the equipment, have it sent to the lab to test the remaining little pieces of substrate for inoculants. He said that if the lab found anything he could pretty much guarantee us some trouble. He said also, that we would likely be in trouble for destroying the “evidence”. I insisted that it wasn’t evidence until he had confiscated it, and until then we were just ridding ourselves from any legal technicalities. Of course he didn’t agree. For about another ten minutes, he threatened us about how he was going to talk to some people (attorneys and so on) who would be more than interested to prosecute against us for our “malevolent intent to eventually deal”. I don’t know for sure if any of this is true or not, I surely hope not.
I think the only good thing we had going for us is that the two agents took a liking to my girlfriend. She is a very pretty and has such an innocent face; it’s hard for one not to find her charming. So of course they treated me like the evil manipulative boyfriend who was forcing his girlfriend to grow psychedelics in her closet so that he was not caught by the law if the shit hit the fan. The one little bite sized piece of humanity we observed in these cold agents was one of there references to a poster on my girlfriend’s wall. It was a poster of the band “Static-X”. I think the agent said something to the extent of “how badass Static-X is”. Of course that’s true, but it was shocking that he said it. How can this be? How is it possible that someone so authoritarian and rigid could dig a band like Static-X (basically hard-metal), who basks in chaos?
After all the equipment was placed in their vehicle, they insisted that my girlfriend’s mom give me a ride home, so they could follow and confirm where I live. So once again I was hurled back into the same vehicle as my newly made worst enemy. Fortunately my girlfriend traveled along with us to ease some of the tension. Not a word was said besides road directions, my girlfriend’s mom didn’t know where I lived. I got out of the car and the agents watched me walk inside as they glared at me from the driveway. And so it was, they didn’t arrest us or even give us a handshake. Although I did get there name’s on the back of a piece of paper, with there phone numbers just incase I needed to contact them. (Yeah right!)
It was unfortunate that I had to involve my girlfriend in this situation. It needn’t be said I never meant for this to happen. Hell I didn’t even want to involve her in anything illegal. See the thing is, she is an adult, and the penalty, if they do anything would be far more severe then it would for me. (Yes, I’m a minor, not for long though.) Although; she had expressed to me her growing interest and had done a lot of reading online on mycology, growing, etc. She really wanted to do it, but I did persuade her to wait until we were in a more confidential setting, such as our own apartment, out of the country. I do feel responsible for what happened, because obviously if she hadn’t met me, her and her family wouldn’t have got into the huge argument that followed.
The end result though (at least so far, we haven’t been contacted by the agents yet) is she moved out, into my house. Her mom said she forbids her to date me any longer and of course that wasn’t going to happen because we love each other. We are very happy living together. We both have jobs and are both attending college. We haven’t been using any drugs recently, just because we want to be clean from all legalities until this thing blows over. I pray that things do indeed just go away; maybe I’m being stupid for even hoping that. I never would have guessed that just having the equipment could get me and the one person I care for the most in so much trouble. I had always preached to myself that I would be fine as long as I wasn’t directly breaking any laws. I guess I was wrong. It goes to show you what can happen, when people who are biased against those who are interested in entheogens, react. I don’t know what exactly my point was with this story or what you should take from it. I’m not even sure about anything right now myself. I guess though, I wrote this just to warn people. Be extra cautious with anything and everything you do, illegal or otherwise. You have to ask yourself, is what I plan on doing worth having my freedom taken away, regardless of what you feel deeply in your heart to be honest and morally correct.
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Some of the activities described are dangerous and/or illegal and none are recommended by Erowid Center.