Local Doctor And Daughter Accused Of Growing And Selling Marijuana Out Of His Home
By Syma Chowdhry and Todd Quinones
HAVERTOWN, Pa. (CBS) – A respected ophthalmologist in Havertown is now in handcuffs as he walks out of court.
Dr. Paul Ezell and his 23-year-old daughter Victoria were arrested Wednesday morning for growing and selling marijuana out of his home.
Lt. Charles Moore says, “We can estimate somewhere a yearly revenue between $30,000 to $40,000.”
Dr. Paul Ezell is an ophthalmologist specializing in glaucoma and cataract surgery. He shares his Havertown office with other doctors – but they declined to comment.
Police seized plants and numerous items that consist of a sophisticated growing and distributing operation.
Lt. Moore says, “One stage set up for very young marijuana plants. One stage in another area of the basement where the plants would be mid-growth. And another section where they were just about ready to be harvested.”
Ezell’s Havertown office is located on Chester Pike.
Police were tipped off after getting an anonymous call earlier this month, accusing the doctor of selling drugs to his patients.
Police say his home’s electricity usage was consistent with a marijuana growing operation.
“Generally do something with the electrical system in the house to provide for the heat that is required from the heat lamps.”
Paul Ezell has lived in this home on Sagamore Road for 26 years.
Neighbors say they’re shocked.
Kathleen Kelly says, “I’ve never seen any unusual activity, never smelled anything, no.”
Police say Ezell masked the smells using a ventilation system but the house still smelled like pot.
She lives next door and says Ezell’s wife died last year.
“I feel really bad for him, I do. I guess things were pretty bad that he had to resort to that.”
Kathryn McGowan is among neighbors who have known the Ezells for years.
“It’s shocking because you know they are such good people. I knew them when I was younger. I hung out with her. They are normal people. They are great people,” McGowan said.
Lt. Moore says, “This type of operation doesn’t discriminate. People that you wouldn’t expect to being doing this as well as the people you’d see on the streets you would expect to be doing it.”
Police stress it’s too early in the investigation to determine the motive behind the alleged father daughter marijuana operation.
A cash bail has been set for both Paul and Victoria Ezell for $50,000 each.
Dr. Ezell said nothing to reporters at his arraignment Wednesday.
They will be back in court May 1st.