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Wausau committee may examine synthetic pot ban after arrests


WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAU) – Wausau city leaders may take a look at the city's ordinance against synthetic marijuana after a pair of major arrests at local headshops.

Public health and safety committee chair Lisa Rasmussen is proud of the police department and their continued enforcement of the ban on K2 and Spice. “The drugs can be especially dangerous and lead to long term health effects.” She says the drugs have the capacity to harm people and be more dangerous than the pot they're trying to replace. The products mimic the effects of real marijuana. But they can have different effects on users, such as hallucinogenic thoughts, schizophrenic behavior and aggressiveness.

But the ordinance doesn't cover the stores the material's been sold in so far. Rasmussen says that the headshops can operate legally. “The stuff they're selling, the water pipes and such, do have legal uses. But it's the drugs that we're trying to stop.” She says the city will be looking at the outcomes of the cases that have entered the court systems before moving forward with any sort of permanent solution with the headshops.

The owner of Blazing Gifts in Wausau is already facing three felony counts after police completed a 10 week investigation into the store. John Rundell is currently being held on a 20-thousand dollar cash bond. A manager at Lil Devil Glass Shop in Wausau was arrested Friday on similar charges after police found over 200 packages of synthetic pot in that store.

Wausau passed an ordinance last November banning the possession or sale of synthetic marijuana. A state ban took effect in July.