Local Smoke Shops Raided by DEA and Yakima PD - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Local Smoke Shops Raided by DEA and Yakima PD

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 YAKIMA, WA.- An investigation that spanned more than a year led DEA agents and Yakima police to raid two local Yakima smoke shops on Thursday.

Six people were arrested after agents searched the shops; those suspects appeared in the Yakima Federal Court on Friday.

The investigation surrounding these shops in the Yakima Valley and Tri-Cities began back in 2013. 

Yakima PD told us they were tipped off after residents began complaining about "Smoke It's" shop on South First Street and "One Love" shop on South 24th Avenue.

“We're not in these shops, we don't get to see and hear everything so the fact that a number of residents came forward and told us about it, it was able to give us an opportunity to conduct this investigation,” Yakima Chief of Police Dominic Rizzi told KNDO.

Agents were looking for synthetic or chemically laced drugs. They're more commonly referred to as "spice” synthetic marijuana that has hallucinogenic effects.

Police told us the drug would sometimes be labeled as bath salts or incense in stores.

“It can be taken and tested and shown what ingredients are in there and if it's shown to have these synthetic drugs then they can't sell it,” Rizzi explained to us.

Two suspects who appeared in court on Friday were charged with 8 different counts including distribution of a substance and trafficking counterfeit goods.

The other four were charged with conspiracy to distribute and conspiracy to launder money.

We spoke with the owner of The Vape Spot about the effect this has on other smoke shops, she told us she doesn't believe it will negatively affect the community's opinion of the shops, but the news was disappointing.

“I am surprised to hear they are still open based on some of the rumors going around and what's been posted on Facebook, but it is unfortunate for our community that those types of things are happening and people are taking advantage of their businesses and doing that with their business,” Carrie Bertrand told KNDO.

While the raid did close down "Smoke It's" and  "One Love" on Thursday both shops were open for business on Friday.    
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