Montana man caught hauling pot |

Montana man caught hauling pot

A Montana man stopped for a minor traffic violation was arrested after Nevada County Sheriff’s deputies found drugs, cash and a gun stashed in his truck and a trailered car.

A patrol officer stopped a truck with Montana plates that was hauling a car on a trailer on Highway 20 just outside Grass Valley at about 9:30 a.m. Wednesday; the lights were not working on the trailer, and the truck lights were obscured by the trailer, said Sgt. Bill Smethers.

The deputy noticed a “strong odor of marijuana” coming from the car on the trailer, and a chemical odor typical of methamphetamine coming from the truck, Smethers said.

The driver, identified as Troy Damschen, 50, of Lewistown, Mont., consented to a search.

Narcotics officers found a small plastic cylinder hanging from the truck keys that allegedly contained nearly 3 grams of meth. They also allegedly found 2 ounces of crystal meth hidden in a stash can inside the passenger-side door, Smethers said.

They also allegedly discovered a loaded .38-caliber Derringer pistol and ammunition, and what Smethers described as “the beginnings of a home-made silencer,” 97 hydrocodone (a painkiller) pills, digital scales and packaging material, and $6,500 in cash.

Officers also allegedly found 15 pounds of marijuana packaged in resealable plastic bags inside the compartment walls of the car and packed inside four spare tires that were inside the vehicle, Smethers said.

Damschen was arrested on suspicion of possession of controlled substances and possession for sale, transportation of controlled substances, possession of marijuana for sale and transportation for sale, and possessing controlled substances while armed.

He remains in custody in county jail.

To contact Staff Writer Liz Kellar, e-mail or call (530) 477-4229.

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