Butte County Sheriff: 40 marijuana plants found at murder scene

POSTED: 3:55 PM Oct 15 2013   UPDATED: 9:50 AM Oct 16 2013
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PALERMO, Calif. -

Murder mystery in Butte County; the body of a man shot and killed was discovered in Palermo.
 
43-year-old Lewis Newton was found dead outside his home, and investigators think he was murdered.

The sheriff's office was very tight lipped about this case Monday, because they say they're still gathering all of the details.

Newton was found dead of a gunshot wound Friday afternoon near a house at 7425 Gene Lane.
     
Newton's body was found under a tarp near the home.  Investigators revealed that 40 marijuana plants were also found there.  Their relationship to the murder is still unclear.

"It was related to a Prop 215 grow.  To what degree the marijuana garden plays or has a role in the homicide is still being investigated," said Undersheriff Kory Honea.

We did go back to the home Monday afternoon but no one was there.  A neighbor told us over the weekend the family is out of town.

Under Sheriff Honea said, "There were no other drugs that were found at the crime scene, and the murder weapon is still missing."