Late last month, Colorado Springs police busted 28-year-olds Peter Mattaroo and Kristine Bauer for allegedly operating a fake medical marijuana dispensary out of their apartment on Lionstone Drive.
How could the average customer have known it was bogus? We've got some ideas about that.
Neighbors near the apartment had apparently been noticing a lot of traffic in and out of the place, and Colorado Springs police were eventually tipped off about what was going on shortly before Christmas. On December 28, a seventeen-year-old kid and his friends were pulled over leaving the apartment and busted with marijuana, which they told police they had purchased at an "in home" dispensary, according to the Colorado Springs Gazette. Police raided the apartment later that night.
According to the report, police not only found marijuana, but also guns, cocaine and psychedelic mushrooms at the fake MMC. They also busted a second location related to the business that was being used as a grow facility and stash spot for several pounds of weed, more guns, more coke, more 'shrooms and a bullet-proof vest. In total, there were 27 guns, a quarter-ounce of mushrooms and over an ounce of blow.
While it seems ridiculous that something like this could operate so blatantly, the place apparently was pseudo-professional in appearance. The couple allegedly kept their weed separated by strains in jars in display cases, had surveillance cameras and even took credit cards.
So to help you out, dear Mile Highs and Lows reader, we've come up with the top ten signs the Colorado dispensary you shop at is actually just a drug dealer's house:
10. The strain menu is taped to the fridge next to a grocery list for eggs, bacon and bread.
9. The staff is in their pajamas.
8. Instead of state badges, the employees are all wearing "Hello, my name is..." stickers.
7. Security camera cables aren't plugged into anything.
6. Budtenders pass you the joint they are smoking.
5. The customers in front of you are talking about how hard tenth grade chemistry is, and they aren't teachers.
4. State licenses are clearly photocopied and filled out in crayon.
3. When you hand them your card, they ask: "What the hell is that thing?"
2. They keep turning down the radio to turn up a police scanner.
1. In addition to your quarter bag of Haze, the budtender tries to up-sell you with a few caps of boomers and an eight ball of cocaine.
More from our Marijuana archive: "Colorado Medical Marijuana Handbook author on which states are likeliest raid targets" and "Medical marijuana: 4,200 patients seen by physician assistants being denied and rejected."
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.