Military 'copter carried cops looking for pot

Tribune-Star/Joseph C. GarzaSearching: A Blackhawk helicopter hovers north of Indiana State University on Thursday. Indiana State Police said the flights were flown by the Indiana National Guard in support of ISP's marijuana eradication team.

A military helicopter hovering over Terre Haute locations on Thursday and Friday was part of a state police search for marijuana, police said.

An Indiana State Police spokesman said the Indiana Army National Guard is supporting the ISP's marijuana eradication team.

“They fly our troopers around while they look for marijuana,” said Sgt. Matt Ames of the ISP Putnamville post. Ames said the Indiana National Guard has provided the assistance for many years.

Both city police and the FBI said they had no knowledge of the operation.

At least one low-flying helicopter was seen over neighborhoods on the south and east side of the city, as well as the area around the Indiana State University campus.

"Indiana Army National Guard aviation assets were conducting operation in support of law enforcement agencies," Indiana National Guard Master Sgt. Jeff Lowry wrote in response to a Tribune-Star question. "The altitude, flight patterns and loiter time were in accordance with the operations they were supporting."

The National Guard directed further questions to state police.

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