Owner of Tempe Smoke Shop Busted for Selling Stolen Cigarettes, Morphine, and Marijuana to Undercover Cops

smoke shop2.jpg
Tempe Police
Griffith Smith
The House of Glass Smoke Shop in Tempe was raided by police Tuesday after the store's owners accepted stolen cigarettes and sold unlicensed marijuana and morphine pills to undercover cops.

In February, Tempe Police were tipped off to shady behavior happening in the smoke shop's parking lot in the 1600 block of East Apache Boulevard. During the investigation, store owners Griffith Smith, 49, and 27-year-old Joshua Gault, of Peoria, knowingly bought stolen cigarettes from undercover officers.

Smith and Gault resold the cigarettes at the smoke shop for profit.

The two owners -- with the help of 20-year-old Arizona State University student Tyler Benenstuhl -- also sold weed and morphine pills to the undercover detectives, according to Tempe Police spokesman Sergent Steven Carbajal.

smoke shop1.jpg
Tempe Police
Joshua Gault
"We got a call saying there was drug activity going on in the parking lot," Carbajal tells New Times. "It was assigned from there to the undercover detectives. The owners bought those cigarettes knowing they were stolen. We're still sorting through the evidence, but the owners did sell marijuana to the undercover detectives and other patrons."

The two owners and Benenstuhl were arrested Tuesday. Additionally, weed and two handguns were found when police searched the smoke shop.

Smith was booked on 21 counts of trafficking stolen property, sale of marijuana, sale of narcotic drugs, misconduct involving weapons, conspiracy and money laundering, among other charges. Gault was hit with 25 similar charges.

Berenstuhl was charged with four felony counts of selling marijuana.



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11 comments
ericthefool
ericthefool

What shitty police work.  They have to entrap people in order to get any charges now a days.  Just like they sell "bombs" to "terrorists" and then take all the credit.  So, the police had stolen cigarettes and were trying to sell them????  Who are the real criminals here???

Bobby
Bobby

Now we need to catch these serious criminals. They are causing all the problems in Arizona. They are competing with the Mexican drug cartels, might get kids in trouble, and probably aren't paying taxes, like millions of illegal aliens do. And of course the final point is that they're European-Americans, which only makes their hideous crimes worse. Go get em men!!.

livinisez
livinisez

Ouch, weed and cigarettes. Hard drugs for sure. Glad we will spend thousands keeping them off the streets.

Eleanor
Eleanor

Welcome to Tempe.........

ericthefool
ericthefool

 That was one of the slipperyiest racist slopes, I have ever read.  Congratulations!

Guest
Guest

You're right. Law enforcement should only enforce the laws that you (whoever you are, you yahoo) deem important enough to enforce. That sounds fair.

teknik1200
teknik1200

sounds good.  lets start with violent criminals, and then go for thieves.  Then tax dodgers (like the cigarettes here), lets leave the victimless drug offenders out of the loop.  it's a waste.  sure they don't carry guns and are easier to arrest but the other ones are just a menace. 

Marcy
Marcy

So dodging taxes should be OK as long as there are still violent criminals running around?

Guess you missed the STOLEN part when referring to them as tax dodgers.

I'm OK with making pot legal, then everyone, even law abiding persons, can get into the business.  In the meantime, it's illegal and people dealing in it are profiting from the fact that it is illegal.  That's the reason many pot growers in California are opposed to legalization, making money legally is a lot harder than doing it illegally.

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