Owners of smoke shops, raided in crackdown on synthetic marijuana, arrested Tuesday

Baton Rouge police arrested the owners of two smoke shops on Tuesday after authorities raided their shops Friday during a crackdown on the sale of synthetic marijuana, a police spokesman said.

Police booked Demond Eames, 40, 37035 Murphy Webb Road, Prairieville, and Bruce Moore, 47, 4923 Wyandotte Ave., Baton Rouge, into Parish Prison each on possession with intent to distribute Schedule I narcotics, said Cpl. L’Jean McKneely, a police spokesman.

Eames and Moore are co-owners of the Fun Smoke Shop, 14422 Plank Road, and Fun Time Novelties Smoke Shop, 15959 Hewwood Ave., both of Baton Rouge, McKneely said.

The men were arrested at about 12:30 p.m. Tuesday in the 2100 block of O’Neal Lane, McKneely said.

“The owners of the shop know that detectives were looking for them,” McKneely wrote in an email. “Detectives received a call that they were at that location and drove there to arrest them.”

So far eight people have been arrested as a result of the raid.

The Friday crackdown came one day after local health and law enforcement leaders held a news conference warning people about the danger of synthetic marijuana and a spike in synthetic marijuana overdose deaths.

In the two weeks before the news conference, Baton Rouge-area hospitals treated about 100 people suffering from suspected synthetic marijuana overdoses.

During the raids, authorities seized more than 26 pounds of synthetic marijuana in the raids.

Four employees, two from each store, were arrested and booked on possession with intent to distribute Schedule I narcotics.

Two customers in the Fun Time Novelties Smoke Shop were arrested and booked on possession of Schedule II drugs.

One also was booked on resisting an officer while the other was booked on possession of Schedule IV and possession of drug paraphernalia.