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| Crime |

Marijuana: Boulder's Dandelion Dispensary reopens after bizarre bear-mace robbery

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Just checked in with the Boulder Police Department, and spokeswoman Kim Kobel tells us there have been no arrests or new developments regarding the investigation into a bizarre robbery at the Dandelion Dispensary, a Boulder marijuana shop.

But at least the Dandelion has reopened after an extensive cleanup necessitated by the perpetrator's choice of weapon: bear mace.

Our William Breathes reviewed the Dandelion in May 2012. "For being so out in the open, the Dandelion," located at 845 Walnut Street, "is relatively low-key," he wrote. "No neon green paint on the walls or massive pot leaves on its signs. Instead, the shop fits well with its funky off-Pearl Street surroundings.

"The shop is next door to the funky Nepali/Tibetan restaurant Sherpa's, itself a quaint house-turned-business along a stretch of Walnut; it's painted blue and white and adorned with Tibetan flags," Breathes continued. "In comparison, Dandelion's small green cross, unassuming sign and scattering of wind chimes and chairs out on the old front porch don't really stand out much at all.

"Which is nice. Walking in off the street doesn't seem to garner any 'They're going to buy some weed' stares from passersby. Of course, that could just be ganja-tolerant Boulder in general.... But the shop feels like it's at home in the community."

This setting makes what happened just prior to closing time this past Thursday, January 3, even more disturbing.

At 6:56 p.m., according to the BPD, a man knocked on the Dandelion's front door, and the employee who opened it soon discovered he was up to no good. Not only was the suspect wearing a mask over his face, but he carried a FedEx box and what's described as a large can of bear repellent -- the sort of stuff capable of dissuading a charging animal from attacking.

Continue for more about the robbery at the Dandelion Dispensary, including surveillance photos. The man sprayed the bear mace at the employees, causing them to run outside before anyone could push the panic button at the front desk. (One person had to be hospitalized as a result of the attack; others were treated at the scene.) Meanwhile, the man made off with what's estimated as $9,000 worth of marijuana.

That's a notable haul, especially in light of how little most attempted dispensary rip-off artists net from their efforts. Note that the folks behind one 2012 burglary wound up with a broken scale and $8 from the center's karma jar.

Here's one surveillance shot from the Dandelion shared by police....

...and here's another.... As you can see, only one person appears in the shots, contradicting early reports that two crooks were involved. He is said to have been loitering in front of the shop prior to his dastardly deed, not far from a black Pontiac Grand Prix (temporary tag number 382661H) that was idling at the curb during the robbery.

The suspect is described as a white male between six feet and six-two. Weight: approximately 200 pounds. He wore a dark-colored jacket with the North Face logo on the black shoulder and a hoodie underneath it, plus dark pants and hiking boots.

Despite these details, the cops have been unable to cuff anyone for the crime -- and the bear mace meant the Dandelion's owners couldn't reopen immediately. They finally got back to business this weekend, and customers are welcome -- so long as they're not out to blast either staffers or Gentle Ben.

More from our Marijuana archive: "Medical marijuana dispensary burglary nets $8 and a broken scale."

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