Vancouver police looking for marijuana after robbery of Main Street dispensary

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      The Vancouver Police Department is investigating the robbery of a medicinal marijuana dispensary on Main Street.

      According to a VPD media release, the technically illegal business that the cops are helping out was held up on Friday, January 9.

      “Two men entered the store,” the release states. “One man was armed with a handgun and a can of bear spray. He held the staff at gunpoint while the other man removed a quantity of marijuana before both suspects ran from the store. No shots were fired and no one was injured during the robbery.”

      The VPD has not revealed the amount of marijuana that was taken from the dispensary, a Weeds Glass & Gifts on Main Street near East 51st Avenue. The media release also fails to clarify whether or not the stolen marijuana will be returned to the dispensary if and when officers retrieve it.

      Selling pot via a storefront is illegal under the federal Marihuana for Medical Purposes Regulations, which came into effect on April 1, 2013.

      For years now, Vancouver police have maintained a relaxed attitude towards marijuana storefronts. VPD chief Jim Chu has repeatedly stated that a dispensary does not meet law enforcement agencies’ criteria for a “priority” target.

      The VPD has however busted a number of dispensaries after they broke certain unwritten rules.

      Last September, police executive a search warrant against a business called Budzilla at 2267 Kingsway after receiving complaints it was selling edibles that looked like the sort of candy a child might enjoy.

      In July 2014, a Jim’s Weed Lounge at 882 East Hastings Street was busted because, according to police, customers were reselling to kids in the area around the shop.

      Before that, a Weeds Glass and Gifts at 2580 Kingsway was raided by police on June 23. Cops said they showed up because that location was also being used to grow young plants (otherwise known as clones).

      When the Straight last requested an official count in October 2014, there were 46 medicinal-marijuana dispensaries operating in Vancouver, according to statistics supplied by the city. 

      In March 2014, Chu emphasized that Vancouver is "not a wide open city for the marijuana trade".

      That rhetoric was however tempered by a VPD media release stating that drug unit priorities include upper-level drug traffickers, gang members, dealers responsible for violence, and traffickers selling hard drugs such as heroin or cocaine.

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      Jan 12, 2015 at 5:06pm

      So the VPD has no concerns about these illegal storefronts because they aren't top priority but what if the folks who own and operate these illegal storefronts are actually "upper-level drug traffickers, gang members, dealers responsible for violence, and traffickers selling hard drugs such as heroin or cocaine". I'm just guessing of course but it might be worth looking into .....


      Jan 12, 2015 at 5:15pm

      In what city does Jim Chu act as the Police Chief????? He says Vancouver is "not a wide open city for the marijuana trade". What's he smoking????? Oh wait, he and Gregor were the only two people in Vancouver who didn't know there would be a riot after game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals. Man, talk about two people who are really out of touch.......

      Get ba grip!

      Jan 13, 2015 at 8:13am

      Legalise it!

      Simple enough?

      Time for the Police to go after real criminals...murderers etc.

      Shon Togan

      Jan 13, 2015 at 10:20am

      This is what happens when "pain relief" spins out of control. I just feel so bad for the robbers, you know, who are no doubt struggling with cancer treatments and glaucoma, or the rising price of Doritos while trying to point a firearm with some sense of authority. My nicotine-riddled heart goes out to the survivors of this tragedy.


      Jan 13, 2015 at 12:14pm

      Vancouver Charter requires the mayor to enforce the law for the government of the city.
      We live under the rule of law, not the rule of the law the police chief decides to enforce.

      How Often

      Jan 13, 2015 at 2:21pm

      Does this happen without being reported?
      Do any of these places have their own firearms to secure the "product"?
      How do we know they don't?
      This has gone on long enough.
      The Mayor and Chief Constable are not fulfilling their offices.

      jj brown

      Jan 13, 2015 at 3:47pm

      it is like this now because of all the lies that made criminals out of pot smokers for so, so many years.
      the tide has turned, suck it up and gain knowledge, you let it be the gateway to drugs.
      pot users do not wave guns around even if their being robbed, those would be gangsters.
      pot should be in the hands of the businessman, away from gangsters, gaining taxes for the city, or for you harper fans, more jails and fighter jets.


      Jan 14, 2015 at 1:43am

      I don't know how the banking laws work here.I do know that when I attended at the first off Hastings clinic I saw(on main street)at about 26th ave.I was astounded at how it was set up.Everything was out of sight and I assume in the back.There was no apparent surveillance or security and I remember wondering how long it would be before they were hit?I got a membership form and left.I am surprised it took so long for one to be robbed.In the US it used to be a strictly cash business due to the banking laws there.I believe that's been fixed?


      Jan 14, 2015 at 3:26am

      That is another excellent question, who is laundering the dirty money?


      Jan 14, 2015 at 11:12am

      I'm not sure the cops are looking for the pot so much as the people who robbbed it.