Montana man faces life in prison after officers find 'actively growing marijuana plants'

A Montana man could spend the rest of his life in prison if he is found guilty of growing marijuana plants.

According to an affidavit obtained by the Independent Record, the Missouri River Drug Task Force obtained a search warrant for 22-year-old Chance McKenzie Bowen's home in Helena after receiving multiple tips that he was running a marijuana growing operation.

Officers executing the warrant on Friday found 178 "actively growing marijuana plants," grow lights, ballasts, and other equipment "used in the manufacture of marijuana."

The affidavit said that Bowen admitted to being the owner of the growing operation. He was charged with one count of felony criminal production or manufacturing of dangerous drugs.

KXLH reported that Bowen faces fines of up to $50,000, and a maximum sentence of life in prison.

Montana is nearby Washington state, which recently legalized the sale of marijuana for recreational use.

Watch the video below from KPAX, broadcast July 9, 2014.