Couple detained after hibiscus mistaken for pot

(AP Photo/Seth Perlman, File)

SARVER, Pa. (AP) – A Pennsylvania couple is suing the police and an insurance company because they say they were handcuffed for hours in a patrol car after their hibiscus plants were confused for marijuana.

Edward and Audrey Cramer say in a lawsuit filed Tuesday that a Nationwide Insurance Co. agent investigating a fallen tree at their Buffalo Township home sent photos of their flowering plant to police.

The lawsuit alleges that Buffalo Township police officers with assault rifles came to their home on Oct. 7 and held them for several hours inside a police cruiser, despite both telling the officers the plants were actually hibiscus. They were eventually released.

The Cramers are seeking monetary and compensatory damages and court costs.

Nationwide Insurance declined comment Friday, citing the litigation. Township police also declined comment.

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