Follow KDKA-TV: Facebook | Twitter
BEAVER COUNTY, Pa. (KDKA) – Authorities in Beaver County say it was not your typical drug bust.
Police say a drug dealer was targeting kids with liquid marijuana.
Police in Beaver County made a large scale marijuana bust in New Sewickley Township on Tuesday.
Authorities say teens were the intended market for the drugs.
Police say the liquid marijuana confiscated in the bust contain highly concentrated levels of THC. The liquid is the kind being widely used in vaping devices by teens.
Authorizes say kids were coming to buy the drugs not only from Beaver County, but from everywhere.
Beaver County District Attorney David Lozier says the suspect arrested was wearing an ankle monitor and was on house arrest, when he was arrested again for running the alleged operation out of the home.
On the rural road, police say a lot was going on.
Ronald Leindecker, the police chief in New Sewickley Township says, “A few children had gone to the house and purchased the marijuana waxes and oils out of that house.”
Neighbors didn’t want to go on camera in the 100 block of Snyder Drive but say they saw cars coming and going 20 times a day.
Police say the young people buying the drugs were from everywhere.
“Tri-state area they weren’t just from the Allegheny County, Beaver County, Butler County, Washington County, Fayette County they were from multiple county jurisdictions,” said Leindecker.
Police got a search warrant to go in to the three story log style home confiscating 15 pounds of marijuana, three firearms including a semi-automatic assault rifle, $40,000 cash and liquid marijuana with a THC concentration of 85-95 percent. Police the liquid flavored, multi-scented liquid is the kind kids are often using in vaping devices.
Leindecker said, “Children of this age inhale this stuff, ingest if. It could become toxic to them. It can cause death.”
Arrested for possession and distribution in this large bust with a street value of $150,000 was 24-year-old John James Abmayer III, a convicted felon on house arrest.
Beaver County District Attorney David Lozier says, “He was involved in a shooting in Conway about two years ago. He’s been arrested multiple times.”
The DA says this bust speaks to the large demand for these marijuana products, especially among young people.
“I think all parents should be very concerned because when you see your child or someone in your family vaping, you don’t know what’s in that vape,” says Lozier.
Juveniles caught with marijuana were also charged, and charges are pending against the homeowner and one other person according to police.
The DA also says he also wants people to know that DUI rates have gone up since the popularity of vapes.
Also some of the other colorful items confiscated police says were going to be used to manufacture marijuana lip balm, another product marketed to teens.