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Faribault store has 22 cannabis plants seized on first day of legalization

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Story by Tommy Wiita

Police in Faribault seized 22 suspected cannabis plants from a local tobacco store on Tuesday, the first day the state of Minnesota legalized the possession and use of marijuana.

However, it is still illegal to sell the plant and will be until at least 2024 or 2025, due to the state needing to get its dispensary licensing system up and running.

Officers went to Total Tobacco on the 400 block of Fourth St. NW around 4:50 p.m. Several citizen complaints were made about the business selling marijuana plants in a parking lot tent sale.

Police arrived and found the plants labeled by strain, and some cases, the THC concentration exceeded the percentage allowed for legally grown industrial hemp sales.

According to the city, the plants were seized and no arrests were made.

The business had posted on Facebook a day prior, advertising that the plants would be made available on Tuesday for purchase.

“The Faribault Police Department is committed to supporting businesses engaged in the legal sale of cannabis and cannabis-related products once the Minnesota Office of Cannabis Management is established. Until that time, unauthorized sales of cannabis will be investigated in accordance with state law," Faribault Police Chief John Sherwin said in a statement.

The only areas in the state that are allowed to sell recreational cannabis to people 21 and older are the tribal nations of Red Lake Nation and White Earth. NativeCare, Red Lake Nation's medical dispensary, saw lines of people forming outside its store on Tuesday as the tribal council voted to approve the sales in mid-July.

Lakeland PBS reports White Earth plans to start sales in the first half of August after a council vote approved the measure on Friday.


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