Pubdate: Thu, 10 Aug 2006
Source: Aldergrove Star (CN BC)
Copyright: 2006 Central Fraser Valley Star Publishing Ltd.
Author: Monique Tamminga
Bookmark: (Paraphernalia)


When someone picks up a few items at the local corner store, the list 
is likely to include things like milk, bread and snacks. But at the 
Willoughby Market, it's items like glass pipes, bongs, small glass 
vials, plastic baggies and weigh scales that have police and some 
parents concerned.

Last month, the corner store at 208 Street and 72 Avenue, along with 
a smoke shop in Willowbrook Shopping Mall and a convenience store in 
Aldergrove, were given warnings from Langley RCMP and Township's 
bylaw enforcement that sale of these products may become more difficult.

Currently in the Township, there are no rules prohibiting these 
stores from selling these items. But Township senior bylaw 
enforcement officer Bill Storie is trying to change that.

He's drafting a bylaw that will mimic Langley City's 
recently-approved bylaw restricting the sale of drug paraphernalia. 
Last month, Langley City council banned drug paraphernalia from being 
sold at new businesses and heavily restricted those retail outlets 
that already do. Already, most stores are in compliance.

"If the bylaw passes council's approval, there will be restrictions 
including creating a different business licence (at a cost of $1,000) 
to sell drug paraphernalia and to keep accurate records of who 
purchase it," he said. "Those records have to go to police."

Police have received complaints from parents about the drug 
paraphernalia for sale at the Willoughby Market, said Langley RCMP 
Const. Laurine Crowshaw. She visited the corner store along with the 
other businesses, asking them to voluntarily remove the drug 
paraphernalia. She also warned owners of the criminal implications 
and fines that could result from the sale of drug paraphernalia.

Language in a section of the Criminal Code is being reviewed to 
determine if seizures, fines and criminal charges could be involved 
in selling drug paraphernalia, she said.

Inside glass display cases at the counter of the Willoughby store is 
everything from digital weigh scales, different kinds of knives and 
colourful bongs.

Glass pipes (which average in price from $2 to $10) are used to smoke 
crack or meth, said Crowshaw.

Small glass vials are commonly used for storing personal-sized 
amounts of heroin, crack or meth, she said.

The items behind the glass are selling, the woman behind the counter 
told Black Press. She said she only sells to people 19 years of age 
and older, many of whom are older men.

In February, Willoughby Elementary school Parent Advisory Council 
expressed their concerns. It urged the school board to ask for a 
municipal bylaw prohibiting the sale of drug paraphernalia in corner stores.
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MAP posted-by: Beth Wehrman