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NYC launches illegal smoke shop crackdown. Here's what police found on Day 1

New York City launches crackdown on illegal smoke shops
New York City launches crackdown on illegal smoke shops 02:39

NEW YORK -- A crackdown on illegal smoke shops in New York City started Tuesday, using new authority granted by the state.

The Sheriff's Office and the NYPD said they inspected at least 20 shops across the five boroughs. 

The city actually locked the doors of one on Church Street in Tribeca and law enforcement said to expect to see a lot more padlocks on illegal marijuana shops going forward.

Police carried out bags of what they describe as illegal pot, illegal cigarettes and illegal mushrooms.

"Mushrooms are a felony," New York City Sheriff Anthony Miranda said. "It's clearly presenting a danger to the community. This is unregulated product that they could be mixing with all kinds of things." 

CBS New York tried to reach the owner of the shop in Tribeca to ask him what happened but did not hear back.  

Miranda said officers arrested one person connected to the business, adding the New City Smoke Shop could also be fined thousands of dollars. 

Mayor Adams says crackdown is a work in progress  

City Hall said what happened Tuesday was a result of new powers lawmakers in Albany gave the city last month to shut the shops down.

Mayor Eric Adams had previously vowed to shut down all the city's 2,900 illegal pot shops within 30 days of the state granting that power.

He now says he anticipates making a substantial dent in that time, but some may still be open.

Adams was asked how many shops the city has shut down since it gained that power from the state.

"So we would give you a play by play of the number we're gonna be closing down each day, but there's still a procedure. They could still go to OATH. They could still apply to reopen again and we have to keep using our authority and power to close them down," Adams said. 

City leaders have repeatedly pointed to violent crimes that have happened at or near unlicensed pot shops as a reason why they should be shut down.

Police said someone was stabbed just outside a shop in Harlem on Monday. It's the same shop where police say a 19-year-old shot and killed a man last year.

"That specific location we have to look at and make a determination if actions was taken there or not. But you just reinforced what I was saying -- these shops have become magnets for crime and disorder and has impacted our quality of life," Adams said in response to a question on why the shop has not been shut down already.

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