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Police in North Hollywood arrested three armed suspects who robbed a medical marijuana dispensary located at 10929 Vanowen St. early Wednesday morning, and are still searching for a fourth suspect.
Lt. Alan Hamilton, with the Los Angeles Police Department’s North Hollywood Division, said the robbery occurred around 1:40am at the Garden of Eden dispensary, although news reports identified the dispensary as being called Smoker’s Stop. Hamilton said four suspects burst into the dispensary and robbed the proprietor. He said the dispensary was closed at the time and only one person was inside. Hamilton would not elaborate because of an ongoing investigation, but said police were made aware of the robbery and officers were waiting for the suspects as three of them exited the store. News reports stated that an ambulance crew had been treating someone nearby, and may have notified police about the robbery. Three suspects were taken into custody at the scene, and a perimeter was set up around the neighborhood while police searched for the fourth suspect. Hamilton said he could not discuss how the fourth suspect escaped, and only identified him as being male.
Hamilton said guns and items from the robbery were recovered at the scene, but declined to be specific. He said he did not believe anyone was injured, but news reports also state that someone outside the dispensary was being treated for a head wound.
As of Wednesday afternoon, the three suspects were still being processed at the North Hollywood police station, and were going to be booked for robbery, Hamilton said. He added that it was too early in the investigation to determine whether the group is responsible for any other dispensary robberies. The phone number for the dispensary was out of order.
The robbery occurred one day after the Los Angeles City Council’s Planning and Land Use Management and Budget and Finance Committees jointly approved new provisions to the city’s medical marijuana ordinance. The committees approved fees that dispensaries will be charged to operate within the city. The full City Council is expected to consider the ordinance again in early April, and it will likely go into effect in May.
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