Police investigating alleged armed robbery of pot shop in Tyendinaga Territory
Employees were shaken at “Smoke on the Water” after they say four men brandishing handguns stormed the store demanding money and products. Workers say they forced their way into the back, even holding one of them at gunpoint.
“Then two guys rushed the door, came in the back, guns were pointed, everybody laid down on the ground,” says Scott Seymour, an employee at the store.
He wasn’t there at the time but says there were employees in the store — all being controlled by the gunmen.
“Two of them separated the people at tables, two of them came to the counter with guns, laid everyone in the back, took jars of weed, carried the safe out.”
Seymour, who also runs a tattoo shop in the location, says they’ve had teens try to steal from them before, and in the end, they would get caught. But they’ve never seen anything like this.
“It was four masked men, so it was taken to a whole other level.”
The alleged robbery happened around 1a.m. Thursday. Tyendinaga Police haven’t confirmed this, but Seymour alleges that employees know the persons responsible as the men were caught on surveillance camera checking out the location.
“We know their licence, there are cameras everywhere,” Seymour says. “They parked their car right in front of the camera, all got out without any masks on, came in earlier in the day to scout the store out.”
This isn’t the first time a marijuana dispensary has been robbed in the region. At least two other stores were hit over the past few months. In early September, at least three suspects armed with bear spray attempted to rob the Recreational Cannabis Farmer’s Market but were scared off by a bong-wielding employee.
Other stores are known to have increased security, including high fences and padlocks on all the doors. Seymour says they are assessing the situation and intend on beefing up security, but when it comes to arming employees, it’s not worth the risk.
“Someone could come in and take a bit of weed, or someone could get charged with murder,” Seymour says. “We don’t want to put ourselves on that side of the scale.”
With more of these attempts happening in the region, he says people see an opportunity, but in the end, it’s not worth it.
“It’s getting big, a lot of people in the cities are hearing and they see pictures of shelves full of product and they think it’s an easy go, but it’s not. They do get caught.”
Police confirmed they are looking into the reported robbery but no suspects have been arrested at this time.
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