Detroit police raid medical marijuana dispensary front

One Detroit business claimed to be selling medical marijuana, but police say it was just front for illegal activity. 

On Tuesday police raided the business as the city cracks down on a budding industry with little regulation.

"They were selling weed openly to any citizen that came in which is illegal," said Cmdr. Johnny Thomas, Detroit police.

Detroit Police Department's Major Violators unit raided the medical marijuana dispensary Detroit Medz on Puritan off Hubbell.

DPD arrested two men, seized two guns and more than 4,000 grams of marijuana. Police say it has a street value of more than $40,000.

Police say it's unclear just how much marijuana was sold illegally there. Thomas adds that neighbors have been complaining about this joint for weeks.

"They were selling it outside the guidelines," he said.  "So basically people came in that didn't have a medical marijuana card and purchased marijuana."

And to make matters worst, Detroit Medz operated a stone's throw away from both an elementary and middle school 

"Just last week they had an 8th grade commencement ceremony and individuals from this location were handing out flyers," said councilman James Tate. "So this is how egregious the behavior of some of these individuals can be."

"It's shocking," said a neighboring business owner. "I mean we're trying to bring the city back up and when you got a store or a business that's selling illegal product and advertising to the kids. I think it's a great concern - especially being a parent."

The raid comes as the city gears up to weed out illegal medical marijuana shops. The industry in Detroit operates unchecked.

Tate says the market is oversaturated.

"This is the district I represent, District One and we have approximately 19 we've been able to identify and the district itself is only 18.3 square miles," Tate said.
FOX 2: "How many of these do we have in the city?"

"There's no official number," Tate said. "But again depending on what person you talk to, it can be as high as 80. I've heard as high as 180. There's no official number."

Thomas said that more medical marijuana facilities are springing up, which will lead to police examining all of them to make sure everyone follows the rules.

Legislation regulating the prescription pot has stalled in Lansing, prompting Detroit to come up with its own ordinance as soon as possible.

"Some of the things we're working on," Tate said, "in the ordinance is the proximity in terms of each other in terms of the dispensaries and also distance from schools."