Watermelon wants to become the Martha Stewart of weed.
Perhaps best known for selling watermelon and pot cookies at Wreck
Beach, the blond-haired potrepreneur and activist has just launched an
online marijuana cooking show and she's got a pot cook book in the
"I want to teach everyone how to get the proverbial weed into the
proverbial brownie," she says, grinning.
"I'm not confessing to selling cookies now anymore. What I'm selling
now is my marijuana cooking show. You know it's not illegal to sell
information. Nobody busted Cheech and Chong for producing Up in Smoke."
[continues 793 words]
West Van homeowners now on the hook if their renters go into the
marijuana grow-op business.
It used to be that after cops busted a rental property grow-op the
owner might slap on a new coat of paint, re-carpet and put the house
on the market - or find some unsuspecting new tenants.
Those days have gone up in smoke.
West Vancouver has adopted a Controlled Substance and Nuisance Bylaw,
which requires owners to pay for the cost of dismantling the grow-op
as well as the cost of bringing the residence up to a certain health
and safety levels before it can be inhabited again.
[continues 372 words]
After getting fitted with a caged hockey helmet, shoulder pads and a
kidney belt, Debbie, a West Vancouver mother of three, politely asked
the sporting goods salesman to punch her as hard as he could.
"I was getting ready for the physical confrontation," she
Debbie's fighting crystal meth.
Her daughter Julia (not her real name) is like most teenaged
She's crazy about MSN-ing friends, makeup, exercising and counting
calories. Last week, during an interview with The Outlook, Julia,
decked out in a grey Ecko sweat top and pants, had just stepped out
of the shower and wanted her mother to French Braid her long,
raven-coloured hair before it dried.
[continues 1148 words]
N. Van Group Spreads Word About Drug.
When Aleyna Golinsky was asked to join the North
Vancouver Crystal Meth Task Force, she had no
clue the drug was so prevalent on the North Shore.
"It's made in North Vancouver and sold [in North
Vancouver]. It's in your neighbourhood,"
explained the 20-year-old. "I didn't realize."
After learning more about the depth of the
problem, Golinsky and a group of four others in
their late teens and early 20s -- her sister
Adrianna Golinsky, Denise Wong, Yudi Duque and
Daniela Ugarte -- formed a youth committee that is
leading the task force's youth awareness campaign.
[continues 431 words]
This week, two more questions for the North Shore's federal election
QUESTION: How do you suggest tackling the crystal meth epidemic
plaguing the Lower Mainland?
John Weston, Conservative
"A Conservative government will ensure offenders caught trafficking,
importing/exporting or producing crystal meth will face mandatory
minimum prison sentences. They won't get a slap on the wrist; they'll
get serious jail time. A Conservative government will also make the
raw materials in crystal meth, such as pseudoephedrine, harder to obtain."
[continues 885 words]
When body armour-clad West Van police officers recently executed a
search warrant inside the International Plaza they recovered, among
other things, a loaded .357 calibre handgun and bullet-proof vest.
The police investigation had started after a 911 call about a gun shot
on the Squamish Nation's Capilano Reserve one evening in May.
WVPD officers were assisted by the Integrated Gang Task Force when
arresting a 22-year-old man who was later charged with unauthorized
possession of a firearm, careless storage of a firearm and several
[continues 511 words]
When her 14-year-old daughter was finally locked up inside the Burnaby
Youth Custody Centre, Debbie, a West Vancouver mother of three, slept
"It's a relief for me; she's locked up. It was the first time I could
sleep for months," recalled Debbie, who asked that her last name not
be used for the story. "I knew where she was. I knew she was safe. I
didn't need to bar the windows and hide things of value.
[continues 1034 words]
North Van Sets Up Task Force To Battle Deadly Drug
When the superintendent of the North Van RCMP asked Sheryl Armstrong, a
sergeant with the detachment's general investigation section, to head up
the enforcement side of North Vancouver's new task force on crystal meth,
she wasn't completely aware of the death-grip the drug already had on some
of this community's youth.
But less than a week after her conversation with Superintendent Gord
Tomlinson, Armstrong visited a safe house in North Vancouver and met a pair
of 12-year-old girls who were addicted to meth. She later learned of
several other youngsters - one just eight years old - who had also fallen
prey to the drug that is cheaper, more addictive and deadlier than crack
[continues 651 words]
In a telephone book-sized strategy paper produced by the North Shore Task
Force on Substance Abuse in 2002, one of the stated goals was to offer
local treatment for those struggling with substance abuse.
Soon, as a result of diligent work by the task force and Vancouver Coastal
Health, youth and adults who are battling drugs and alcohol will no longer
have to leave the North Shore for treatment. As early as November, a new
daytime addiction treatment facility - known as "daytox" -will open at 15th
[continues 695 words]
When he was working at a North Vancouver hair salon more than a decade ago,
John Langer wore long-sleeve sweaters in the summer to hide the track marks
that dotted his rail-thin arms. At the time, he was living in a rooming
hotel on East Hastings and taking the SeaBus to work. He was shooting
heroin and doing coke.
His drug use was a cyclical pendulum that had started back in his early
teens. At 14, he was doing pot, LSD, opium and pills. In and out of the
court system in Ontario, he soon found his way to the streets. By 17 he was
living in B.C. and developing a serious coke habit that forced him to do
petty crimes to feed his expensive addiction.
[continues 659 words]
It's cheaper, more addictive and deadlier than crack cocaine. And crystal
meth, also known as ice" or glass," is no longer just a problem on
Vancouver's Downtown Eastside or out in the burbs. It's popular and
plentiful on the North Shore - and teenagers seem particularly at risk.
It's a problem," explained West Vancouver youth outreach work Jan Riddell,
who says she's seen a spike in the use of the deadly, highly addictive drug
in the past two or three years among West Vancouver teens. Certainly in the
last year even more so."
[continues 1471 words]
Nineteen Days In A U.S. Border Prison Wasn't In The Plans.
The prison yard denizens resembled a casting call for HBO's gritty TV
Tattoo-covered toughs pumping iron in the corner; Mexican gang-bangers
from East LA circling around like sharks inside the razor wire-ringed
field under the watchful eye of Khaki-uniformed guards. A 6'5" balding
Russian guy named "Gordo" hustling phone cards and chocolate.
Sometimes fights erupted.
Steve Eyre just stood with his back against a chain-link fence smoking
a Marlboro. It still seemed surreal to him - like a scene from the
movie Midnight Express. But this wasn't a movie set.
[continues 1728 words]
North Van's first-ever hemp store may go up in smoke unless its owners apply
for a business license.
Hemplicious, located at 209 Lonsdale, has been operating without a valid
business licence since opening on October 1.
On Dec. 6, North Vancouver City council will receive a report from the
City's property-use inspector stating that the owners of Hemplicious should
"either obtain a business license or cease to operate within the
Should the business continue to operate unlawfully, staff would be directed
to seek appropriate recourse, including an Order from the Supreme Court of
British Columbia to cease and desist to operate in the City.
[continues 167 words]
The current state of fear and loathing in the West End cannot be blamed
entirely on displaced skid-row dealers and junkies.
"Yes, there's been some displacement but clearly the changes that we see in
the West End are to a great extent the result of other factors," says VPD
Inspector Larry Weeks, who spoke last Thursday at a community forum on the
growing concern over safety in the neighbourhood.
Vancouver-Burrard MLA Lorne Mayencourt organized the meeting in response to
the barrage of telephone calls he's been fielding from constituents fed up
by the increase in crime and drug-dealing in the West End.
[continues 514 words]
The VPD's drug dragnet through the streets of the Downtown Eastside has
displaced pushers and addicts to the West End, according to
Vancouver-Burrard MLA Lorne Mayencourt.
Drug dealing has become so brazen at the corner of Bute and Davie Streets
that residents now refer to the intersection as the "Bute Street Boutique."
There's been an ongoing problem in the neighbourhood with crystal meth
dealers but "now we're having a problem with crack dealers," Mayencourt
told the WestEnder.
[continues 580 words]
Officer, if I am under arrest or being detained, please tell me so. If I am
free go, please tell me so. If I am under arrest, please tell me why. I
want to exercise my right to silence and my right to speak to a lawyer
before I say anything to you. I do not consent to be searched. If you need
me to do something, you must first command me and explain why. I will not
willingly talk to you until I speak to a lawyer.
[continues 612 words]
Like U.S. Marines in Baghdad, the Vancouver Police Department has vowed to
take back the inner city one block at a time if necessary--but city council
isn't backing them with the necessary funds.
In November, the VPD began deploying a minimum of two officers to the
corner of Main and Hastings, nearby the Carnegie community centre--24 hours
a day, seven days a week--to deter the open use and trafficking of crack
and heroin at the city's most notorious open drug markets.
[continues 485 words]
She knows all about the needle and the damage done. She has lived and
worked in the Downtown Eastside for more than a decade and knows too many
people who've OD'd in alleys and cheap rooming hotels.
Liz Evans knows a safe injection site won't solve the area's inveterate
drug epidemic, but given proper supervision, fewer addicts will end up
wearing toe-tags, she believes.
"It doesn't solve all the problems, but it's a necessary step to eliminate
unnecessary deaths," Evans said Thursday as she gave a tour of a new safe
injection site for IV drug users proposed for the Downtown Eastside.
[continues 455 words]
Crystal meth dealers have set up shop at the corner of Bute and Davie.
"They're tapping into the youth and gay community in that area," says
Vancouver Police Department Inspector Dave Jones. "The dealers aren't nice
people and what they're selling is pure poison."
Known on the street as "ice" or "crystal," the sugar-like powder is usually
sold in Ziploc baggies for under $5. And the drug is as addictive as it is
inexpensive. Meth is more addictive than cocaine and, unlike crack, which
produces a fleeting 20-minute high, crystal meth lasts between eight and 12
hours. For a user to become addicted it only takes about a month of
occasional use; odds of relapse are 93 per cent.
[continues 423 words]
Vancouver Police Department Insp. Bob Rich calls it the "Seinfeld approach"
"It's about doing nothing but it works."
In November, the VPD began deploying a minimum of two officers to the
corner of Main and Hastings, near the Carnegie community centre--24 hours a
day, seven days a week--to deter the open use and trafficking of crack and
heroin at the city's most notorious open drug markets.
In the past, more traditional methods such as beat patrols and undercover
operations have had only short-term success in breaking up the open drug
scene at Main and Hastings. So far, the 24/7 police presence has worked.
Today, the 100 or so regulars that used to loiter around the corner have
decamped, making the Carnegie centre once again accessible to the community.
[continues 447 words]