Prosecutors: NJ couple pleads guilty to starting illegal marijuana service and employing their son

Authorities say John Garman told an undercover police officer that his 14-year-old son would be working during the summer handing out business cards on the boardwalk.

Lanette Espy

May 2, 2024, 11:48 AM

Updated 27 days ago

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A couple in Somers Point pleaded guilty to starting their own illegal marijuana service then employing their 14-year-old son to promote it, according to Atlantic County prosecutors.
Prosecutors say Donna Shiffler, 40, and John Garman, 39, were arrested after police say Garman sold marijuana, psilocybin mushrooms and THC edible products to an undercover police detective during the months of April and May 2023 at the Ocean Heights Shopping Plaza in Somers Point.
An investigation began March 2023 in response to public health and safety concerns. Prosecutors say Garman promoted his drug distribution business, "Garmans Goods," by advertising publicly on social media and placing jars of marijuana at various public locations in Somers Point.
Authorities say Garman told the undercover police officer that his 14-year-old son would be working during the summer handing out business cards on the boardwalk.
On May 25, 2023, police arrested Garman and Shiffler. Prosecutors say a search warrant was executed at the apartment where the couple lived with their three minor children, ages 14, 12 and 7 years old.
According to prosecutors, $119,000.00 in U.S. currency and more than 100 pounds of illegal marijuana products were found inside the home.
Shiffler pleaded guilty Tuesday to first-degree employing a juvenile, possession with the intent to distribute marijuana, maintaining a production facility and endangering the welfare of a child.
Garman pleaded guilty on March 18 to first-degree employing a juvenile, possession with the intent to distribute marijuana, maintaining a production facility, conspiracy to possess marijuana with the intent to distribute, endangering the welfare of a child and money laundering.
The couple faces five to 10 years in prison. Garman is scheduled for sentencing on May 20. Sentencing for Shiffler is scheduled on July 9.


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