After 28 marijuana plants were seized at his home, police said, a Main Line eye doctor was arrested Wednesday and jailed on drug charges.
Appearing before a district judge, Paul Carter Ezell, 58, of Haverford Township, wearing a brown T-shirt and blue hospital scrub pants, was ordered held on $50,000 bail at the Delaware County jail.
Charges against him and his daughter, Victoria, 23, included possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, and criminal conspiracy, according to court records.
Police said they received an anonymous tip this month that Paul Ezell was "growing marijuana at his residence and selling it to his patients and other individuals," according to a news release.
After an investigation, police served a search warrant Wednesday morning. Police said that along with the marijuana plants, which were in various states of growth, items seized at the home included plastic containers with marijuana clippings, grow lights and fans, a Hydrofarm water pump, bongs, a scale, plastic bags, computers, about $1,300 in cash, and one copy of Maximum Yield indoor gardening magazine.
"There was enough evidence at the scene to arrest both parties," said Lt. Charlie Moore of the Haverford police.
The basement windows on Ezell's three-story stone home in the 200 block of Sagamore Road, where the family has lived for 26 years, were covered from the inside. A large sheet of plywood painted green to match the house trim covered the window on the side door of the house.
Neighbor Kathleen Kelly said she was surprised to hear that Ezell was arrested. She had not seen any activity that would lead her to believe he was selling drugs from his home, she said.
"I'm taken aback; he's an eye doctor," she said. She said he was a very nice neighbor who "kept to himself."
Kelly said Ezell's wife, Jane, who had been "pretty sick" for the last few years, died in August. The daughter recently graduated from the University of Scranton, she said.
Ezell attended the University of Michigan Medical School and was a resident at Wills Eye Hospital. He has a current state license, with no record of disciplinary actions. Ezell specializes in ophthalmology and performs cataract removal surgery and glaucoma surgery as well as other procedures, according to the website healthgrades.com.
A 2009 position statement on the American Glaucoma Society stated that while marijuana can lower internal eye pressure, the society did not recommend the drug as a method of treatment because of the lack of evidence that its use "alters the course of glaucoma."