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Reported rooftop pot plants were actually tomatoes

May 9, 2013 at 1:18 PM

NEW YORK, May 9 (UPI) -- New York police said a marijuana farm reported on a rooftop by a building superintendent was actually just a group of tomato plants.

Christian Delarosa, 34, super of the Brooklyn apartment building, called police Wednesday morning to report a group of marijuana plants on the roof of the building, the New York Daily News reported Thursday.

"I don't know much about plants. I'm not too good with that," Delarosa said. "When I saw them, the first thing I thought was 'Oh, my God.' Right there I looked it up on my phone and they looked close to marijuana plants, but I thought I should call someone who knew about plants, so I called police."

"When the police officer came he couldn't tell right away, either," Delarosa said.

However, officers soon determined the plants were tomatoes, not marijuana.

Mikeal Roose, chairman of Botany and Plant Sciences at the University of California, Riverside, said he does not understand how someone could mistake tomatoes for marijuana plants.

"They're not the same species; they're not the same genus. I don't even think they're part of the same family," Roose said. "It's very hard for me to see that somebody could [confuse the two]. If you put the leaves side by side, you wouldn't be able to mistake them."

Delarosa said he plans to lock the roof access door despite the benign nature of the plants.

"No one's supposed to be there anyway," Delarosa said.

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