William David Bush Convicted After Police Smell Marijuana on His Money But Don't Find Any Actual Drugs

The way your money smells could land you in jail. Seriously.

When William David Bush, a Sebastopol, Calif. resident, was pulled over for speeding, police searched his truck and found $47,000 in cash in his trunk. They suspected drugs were involved, but didn’t find any actual marijuana. They did, however, decide that his cash strongly smelled like pot and determined that the money had to have come from a drug deal. They arrested the man shortly thereafter, and has now been convicted following a two-day trial.

“The odor was so overwhelming that one of the officers said he could smell it from across the road,” said prosecutor Sharmalee Rajakumaran.

Although they didn’t find any marijuana in Bush’s truck, they apparently did find a letter describing various strains of marijuana, as well as small particles of pot on the floor. They also discovered receipts for items that would be used to grow marijuana outdoors along with stubs from money orders used by many drug dealers to filter cash.

Bush, who represented himself in the trial, denied that the money came from marijuana sales and gave various reasons as to why he had $47,000 in cash in his trunk, including that it was given to him from his mother and that it was from his ATM business. Still, the testimony given by the police regarding the strong smell of the money along with the bits of evidence found in the vehicle were enough to convince a jury that Bush was guilty.

He could face a maximum of four years in prison, and his sentencing hearing is scheduled for October 24th.


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