KING5 in Seattle reported on a pot shop that’s hired armed security following a pair of armed robberies in recent months. They must have found the only pot shop in America that didn’t already have a guard with a gun. Then again, many pot shops in Washington State advertise themselves as “no guns” locations for customers. They also (obviously) have recreational pharmaceuticals and, thanks to banking regulations, deal exclusively in cash, making them ideal targets for violent criminals.
If the pot shops here in Illinois are any indicator, a dispensary without armed security would make the evening news. Here in the Land o’ Lincoln, openly armed private security, dressed almost like cops, often outnumber the customers. Especially as shops often limit the number of browsers to only two or three at a time. Or so I’m told.
But at Buddy’s Cannabis in Renton, Washington, owner Myles Kahn isn’t happy about the expense of hiring armed security “for the protection of his customers and his business.”
From KING5 . . .
A local cannabis shop in Renton is opting for private, armed security to further protect its business and customers, amid a week of several armed robberies at marijuana stores.
Buddy’s Cannabis was robbed in December and again in January.
“There’s been a huge uptick in armed robberies in the cannabis world,” Owner Myles Kahn said…
“So that’s almost like an invitation to these people who have ill intentions. We have cash, and we have drugs, right? So that’s very attractive for the wrong type,” Kahn said.
For a guy who has been selling weed (legally) for six years, how is it that he just managed to figure that out?
While the bulk of armed security officers represent their clients well with professional and competent service, not all of them fall into that category. Just because a business employs a guy in uniform with a gun doesn’t mean it’s “safer” for customers and the business.
Cutting corners on armed security can result in problems In Chicago, cops say an “armed” security guard — a felon with outstanding warrants — killed a bystander while opening fire at a guy a block away who was fleeing after shooting him in the foot moments before. That happened earlier this year.
Not long before that, another armed security guard in a liquor store shot and killed a man who refused to wear a COVID mask. That four-time felon guard admitted shooting the man, but claimed self-defense because of the virus.
Then there was another armed security guard for anti-gun Father Michael Pfleger, also in Chicago, who was arrested for carrying a gun illegally on the steps of Pfleger’s Catholic church.
Another former member of Pfleger’s security team was arrested for murdering a woman trying to boost some trivial item from a corner Walgreen’s store where he worked as armed security.
Long story short, do your homework and do business with a reputable agency before hiring security. Armed protection seems to be a prerequisite for operating a legal dispensary. Here’s hoping Mr. Kahn’s dispensary isn’t victimized again.