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Waterville shop raided for drug paraphernalia
    #1450836 - 04/11/03 09:50 PM (15 years, 1 month ago)


Friday, April 11, 2003

Waterville shop raided for drug paraphernalia
Police seize items from Maine Street shop

By DOUG HARLOW, Staff Writer

WATERVILLE ? Waterville police raided a Main Street specialty shop Thursday afternoon, seizing smoking pipes, T-shirts, postal scales and stickers advocating marijuana use.

Pandora's Box had been open less than two weeks.

"We're seizing any and all drug paraphernalia items," Police Chief John E. Morris said from the sidewalk as detectives and uniformed police officers executed a search warrant inside the shop.

"We're seizing anything that has to do with drugs ? pipes, bongs, signs, T-shirts," Morris said. "Anything made for or advocating the consumption and ingestion of illegal drugs."

The store in Waterville and another in Presque Isle are owned by Joseph Correale of Fort Fairfield. Correale's telephone number is unlisted at his request, according to the telephone company.

An employee at the Presque Isle store said Correale was on his way to Waterville late Thursday and was unavailable for comment.

The employee, who would not give his name, said Pandora's Box has been open for two or three years in that town and never had a problem with local police.

Waterville police Detective David R. Caron said police confiscated 250 pipes of various size and description, including a large brass hookah pipe.

Police also seized 50 postal scales, plastic "bongs," water pipes, pipe screens and detoxification liquids designed to flush a person's system of illegal drugs. Also seized were T-shirts with pictures of marijuana leaves across the front and stickers saying, "Got Weed?"

"My personal favorite was 'Work Free Drug Zone,' " Caron said.

Taken all together, according to Morris, the items seized Thursday were evidence that the pipes, rolling papers and other smoking devices are drug paraphernalia.

Other items of clothing and shelves of sex toys and erotic devices were not taken. The store was closed for the rest of the day Thursday.

Evert N. Fowle, district attorney for Kennebec and Somerset counties, said the search warrant was signed by Waterville lawyer Daniel Dubord, a justice of the peace and a court magistrate qualified to approve search warrants.

Fowle said police and prosecutors did not try to circumvent Waterville District Court to obtain a search warrant for Pandora's Box. He said it is routine to go to a magistrate in nonfelony cases.

Last year, District Court Judge John Nivison ruled in favor of the owner of another such "head shop," Happy Trails, also in Waterville.

The owner of Happy Trails at 121 Main St., four doors down from Pandora's Box, beat the charges brought against him after his store was raided in 1999 and $10,000 worth of smoking pipes were seized by Waterville police.

Nivison ordered the return of the pipes, referred to as drug paraphernalia by Morris and Fowle. The judge ruled police had not proven that the pipes were intended to be used to smoke illegal substances.

Fowle and Waterville police said the case against Pandora's Box is different.

"It's not just the atmosphere that they created, it's the totality of the circumstances," Caron said. "Combine with the products that were for sale, this is paraphernalia."

Fowle said there is ample evidence in the case against Pandora's Box to get a search warrant and to bring misdemeanor charges.

"The quality of our evidence in this case will be stronger than in the Happy Trails case," he said. "I am very comfortable with the quality of the evidence in this case."

Business owners along Main Street said Thursday that the raid comes as no surprise.

"Good," George Gordon, owner of the Maine Made & More Shop, said when he heard of the raid. "Customers are saying it's too bad it's on Main Street, and Main Street isn't a place for it. It's in such a prime place on Main Street."

Jon Jorgensen, co-owner of Jorgensen's Cafe, two doors down from Pandora's Box, agreed.

"People seem furious," he said. "I think it's not real advantageous to have downtown. I don't think we need that downtown."

William Arnold of North Belgrade, who owns the space that Pandora's Box is leasing, said Thursday he did not know Pandora's Box would be selling what police are now calling drug paraphernalia.

"I was told it was going to be T-shirts and leather jackets and that sort of stuff," he said, adding that he will be in contact with his lawyer on Friday. "I don't know what my legal rights are."

Doug Harlow ? 861-9244



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Re: Waterville shop raided for drug paraphernalia [Re: motaman]
    #1450882 - 04/11/03 10:09 PM (15 years, 1 month ago)

my blood pressure is rising.

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Re: Waterville shop raided for drug paraphernalia [Re: ]
    #1450921 - 04/11/03 10:25 PM (15 years, 1 month ago)

Operation Pipe Dreams SUX! What a bunch of crap. You'd think they could find REAL criminals to hassle?

Makes me sad to read this stuff.


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Re: Waterville shop raided for drug paraphernalia [Re: motaman]
    #1452003 - 04/12/03 11:29 AM (15 years, 1 month ago)

MAN!!! fucking pigs have nothing better to do, that is complete BULLSHIT!@@@


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Re: Waterville shop raided for drug paraphernalia *DELETED* [Re: motaman]
    #1453360 - 04/12/03 08:54 PM (15 years, 1 month ago)

Post deleted by Component

Reason for deletion: ...

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Re: Waterville shop raided for drug paraphernalia [Re: Component]
    #1453562 - 04/12/03 10:24 PM (15 years, 1 month ago)

The law is designed so that the more vocal you are, the easier it is to bust you.

It's painfully clear that the intent of the law is to abridge free speech. They want to shut as many people up as possible who publicly advocate illegal drug use.

If this could be proven in court it would be a basis to repeal the law.


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