Local News

Wilson Police Crack Down On Store Clerks Selling Drug Paraphernalia

Posted August 1, 2001 5:16 a.m. EDT

— Wilson police say small glass tubes sold in convenience stores and other shops are part of the drug industry. Today, they are cuffing employees and taking the tubes off the street.

They may look innocent enough, but Wilson police say some stores are selling small glass tubes to people to smoke crack cocaine. After a five-week investigation, police have arrested 12 store employees and charged them with selling drug paraphernalia.

The former owner of a Wilson record store was also charged. Mike Lewis, who just bought the place Tuesday and is not a suspect, says he will take anything illegal off his shelves.

"Everything in this business is intent. If somebody comes in and lets us know that they're going to use something for illegal purposes, [We say] we don't sell things for illegal purposes. We sell tobacco accessories," he says.

Police say the tubes sell for $3 to $7 apiece in most stores. In every case, they say the undercover officer specifically asked the clerk for something to smoke crack cocaine.