When a loud, rumbling sound woke Maya and Bill Donnelly as they slept in their Arizona home early in the morning, they assumed it was thunder. Who can blame them, as the first thing that comes to mind when you hear noises in the night is hardly “a 26-pound package of marijuana has just fallen through our carport and demolished our dog’s kennel,” right?
But when Maya went outside the next morning, she noticed splintered wood scattered around the carport before directing her attention to the kennel, sitting askew with its top caved in thanks to a very suspicious-looking black package sitting where their German Shepherd, Hulk, should have been. (Thankfully the canine is known for wandering the streets at night and was absent from the potential death trap when the drop occurred.)
The Donnellys live in Nogales, AZ — a border town that’s no stranger to instances of drug smuggling. In fact, in the past, cartels have even used catapults to shoot packages of weed across the border like medieval boulders. So after seeing what actually went bump in the night, Maya called 911.
When police arrived at the Donnelly residence, they confirmed her suspicions — the package contained about 26 pounds of marijuana and had a street value of almost $10,000. Investigators reasoned that the package probably came from a small aircraft or drone used to smuggle weed across the border from Mexico to Arizona and that the parcel was accidentally dropped too soon.
“Someone definitely made a mistake,” said Nogales Police Chief Derek Arnson, “and who knows what the outcome of that mistake might be for them.”
I certainly wouldn’t want to be the pilot or drone-operator who lost $10,000 of weed for the cartels and garnered national media attention about their current method of smuggling, but hey — we live in a Drug War world that creates and feeds these criminal operations, so really what can we do? Oh, legalize marijuana, I suppose.
Ultimately the Donnellys say they’re just happy the bundle hit the carport and empty kennel instead of the house where they and their three teenage daughters were sleeping, which could have turned this quirky story into a tragic one. The family will have to pay about $500 in damages and get Hulk a new (hopefully reinforced) kennel to sleep in, which Maya says is a fact not lost on their friends.
“That’s what everybody says: ‘Why did you call 911?’” Maya said. “But how can you have a clear conscience, right? Though we could have made lots of home repairs with that.”
The $10,000 definitely would have covered the carport and a new pimped-out kennel for Hulk, but then in accordance with U.S. law, you’d be a felon — so there’s that.