ASHEVILLE¬†‚ÄĒ At Instant Karma, a longtime Asheville retail store for crystals, tapestries and other hippie-lifestyle accouterments, a newer inventory item is receiving the wrong kind of attention.¬†
Owner¬†Jackie Rees and general manager Mike O‚ÄôDekirk said that¬†sometime between 8:30 p.m. May 13 and daybreak May 14, a smash-and-grab incident relieved the store of much of its CBD flower.
The flower, which looks and smells remarkably like marijuana but has less than .3%¬† of the psychoactive chemical THC, has virtually no street value¬†but retails for about $10-12 a gram.¬†
“Either they’re naive or they’re trying to pawn it off as marijuana and sell it,” said O‚ÄôDekirk.¬†
Thieves reportedly shattered a glass case and stole about $2,000 worth of CBD flowers, ignoring cash and other CBD-infused products, including more-valuable tinctures as well as CBD pet treats.¬†
“We have CBD oil in glass jars for over $100 a piece, and they didn’t touch it,” Rees said.
An Asheville Police Department¬†incident report reveals chocolate almonds and rolling papers were also reported stolen from the store.
O‚ÄôDekirk and Rees hope¬†video footage from a neighboring business might reveal the perpetrators, though it will take some time to receive and comb through the data.¬†
Meanwhile, they imagine the stolen merchandise has likely been taken out of town.¬†“Word will start getting around fast that someone’s trying to sell stuff without THC as the real deal,” Rees said.
Asheville Police Department spokeswoman Christina Hallingse said an¬†investigation is ongoing but in its preliminary stages,¬†so the department could not speculate on a motive, or where the suspects might be.¬†
The case is being treated as a felony breaking and entering with force.
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Meanwhile, Instant Karma is getting¬†stronger security, with cameras coming soon.
The shattered glass was fixed by Wholesale Glass and Mirrors on Haywood Road within hours of the incident.
CBD-infused edibles and other products have given a bump to the retail store’s business, said Rees, who has no plans to stop selling the hemp flowers.
“This is something we’ll continue to carry,” O’Dekirk added. “This won’t deter us.”
Other stores selling CBD flowers and products have¬†been similarly targeted, with Clover CBD on Patton Avenue and¬†Franny’s Farmacy¬†in Hendersonville both hit this year.¬†
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