There were three attempted robberies of cannabis dispensaries and businesses in West Oakland early Tuesday morning, and in one particularly brazen pot burglary, the thieves rammed their way into the storefront with a forklift.
We’ve seen some pretty bold burglary tactics employed to hit cannabis dispensaries since the dawn of legal weed in 2018, as pot shops tend to have a lot of cash on hand because of banking restrictions, and the product is magnificently easy to resell. But KTVU has obtained security camera footage, seen below, showing an early Tuesday morning burglary of a West Oakland cannabis business where the thieves broke into the store using a forklift.
“What’s next? Are they going to bring a crane or some other piece of equipment?”
Criminals target a West Oakland micro grow business.
The individuals cased the area and then used a forklift.
— Dave Detling (@DaveKTVU) June 20, 2023
“I talked to security experts who been doing this for 20 to 30 years, and even they’ve never seen anything like this, so this came out of left field,” the company’s business manager Chris Castle told KTVU. “Where did they even get the equipment from?”
The business, which is not named, may not necessarily be a dispensary. It’s described by KTVU as a “cannabis microbusiness,” a legal California designation that could be a retail dispensary, or could also be a cultivation or distribution (transport) facility, or a manufacturing plant for edibles, vape oils, and such.
One security camera image KTVU obtained shows a timestamp of 12:55 a.m. Tuesday morning. And that station also reports on two other cannabis business robbery attempts in the wee hours of that same morning, and it’s unclear if they are related.
Per KTVU, an unnamed dispensary on the 4400 block of Telegraph Avenue was also broken into at 3:30 a.m., with four people gaining access to the store while another individual acted as a lookout. That dispensary declined to comment. Later that same morning, thieves attempted to break into another dispensary at 19th Street and Broadway with a crowbar, but were unsuccessful.
If you have any information on this incident, you’re asked to call Crime Stoppers of Oakland at (510) 777-8572. Tipsters can remain anonymous.
Image: forklift in warehouse. Via Getty Images
This content was originally published here.