Centralia Police Raid Pot Dispensary, Make Arrest


    Centralia police on Wednesday night raided Hub City Natural Medicine, the "cannabis collective" featured on the front page of The Chronicle on Saturday, and made one arrest.

    Police released the following statement. Check Thursday's Chronicle for more information.

After multiple complaints of state and federal marijuana possession violations, Centralia Police Department Anti-Crime Unit initiated an investigation of “Hub City Natural Medicine” 120 S. Tower Ave. Centralia, Washington. The establishment obtained a business license from the city by specifying the nature of the business as “education and sales of natural medicine” Information gathered from various confidential sources indicated the business was actually functioning as a medical marijuana dispensary.

After a month long investigation, the team served a search warrant at the location today. Dried marijuana in large mason type jars and packaged for individual sales was seized along with various baked goods, candies, and refrigerated items suspected of containing marijuana, paraphernalia and the business’ computers. One male adult was arrested for Possession of Marijuana over 40 grams, Possession with intent to Deliver Marijuana, and Delivery of Marijuana.

The business’ license application was handled administratively within the city because there was nothing in the application that would trigger a review by the Chief of Police. The common understanding of “natural medicine” is vitamin supplements, herbs and herbal compounds, and essential oils. Triggers for a review of a business license application by the Chief of Police include sales of alcohol, gambling, and negative results of a wants and warrants check. Individuals may be denied a license based on their criminal convictions as well. For instance, a convicted burglar may not be issued a business license to operate an alarm company.

According to a Risk Management Bulletin issued in December 2010 by the Washington Cities Insurance Authority (WCIA), “Medical Marijuana Dispensaries” are illegal and are not entitled to a business license. Further details of the bulletin are a matter of public record available through WCIA. Information regarding medical marijuana can also be obtained through the Washington State Department of Health website.