Couple Charged With Possessing 409 Pounds Of Illegal Mushrooms

SATURDAY, OCT. 25, 1997

A Thurston County couple will stand trial in December on charges they possessed 409 pounds of hallucinogenic mushrooms, which police valued at more than $400,000.

James G. Hoffman, 34, and Diane F. Hoffman, 32, are charged with manufacturing and intending to sell psilocybin mushrooms seized during a July raid. The husband also is charged with unlawful possession of firearms.

Detectives with the Thurston Narcotics Task Force initially said more arrests were expected, with a possible multistate connection.

But task force Lt. Bill Flinton said Thursday the Hoffmans likely will be the only people who will face charges.

The husband’s attorney, Jeffrey Steinborn, said hallucinogenic mushrooms should not be illegal. He also said there’s no proof the Hoffmans made any money from selling mushrooms.

“What’s the flap?” he asked. “They’re mushrooms. They make you giggle.”

Trial is scheduled for Dec. 15 in Thurston County Superior Court.

If convicted, James Hoffman faces a standard sentence of 15 to 20 months in prison, while Diane Hoffman would face about six months to a year.

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