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Suspect throws homemade bomb at Tacoma cannabis shop

Tacoma police said what appeared to be an “improvised explosive device” was found outside the store. Video also shows a Molotov cocktail being thrown at the store.

TACOMA, Wash. — Craft Cannabis in Tacoma is asking for the community’s help after it was targeted with homemade explosives on March 15.

The store’s owner, James Bean, owns three other pot shops in Wenatchee and Vancouver; he opened the Tacoma store just over two years ago. But all of these incidents have happened in the past six weeks. 

Six weeks ago is when the store finished remodeling and had a grand reopening.

Bean said he has never experienced something as severe as this at any of his stores. He now hopes the suspects will be held accountable.

“So he’s walking up with the bomb here,” said Bean, as he pointed to security footage.  

Bean said a duffel bag was left outside the cannabis shop with a homemade explosive inside. Tacoma police confirmed this to KING 5.

Bean said a staff member found the bag later in the day and called police.

“It was clearly a homemade bomb with the intent to do damage to the building,” said Bean.

The Tacoma Police Department said they were called to the store for a suspicious object. Police said the object appeared to be an “improvised explosive device.” 

A member of the Tacoma Police Explosive Ordinance Disposal Team responded to the location, inspected the device and determined it was safe to remove from the location.

Surveillance video from Craft Cannabis shows that after the suspect left the duffel bag near the front of the store, they went to the back of the store to attempt to cause more damage.

“They rolled some type of fire starter onto the side of the building and the they threw a Molotov cocktail against the building to try and ignite it,” said Bean.

They put the fire starter on a banner that just the month before was stolen twice.

The surveillance video caught some of the suspects’ faces during the banner thefts, but it is still unknown if those are the same people who left the explosive.

“This was very focused,” said Bean. “When they came to the store, they had equipment to steal the banner.”

These three incidents all happened since the store had a grand reopening after a remodel six weeks ago. The sign that keeps getting targeted advertises 35% off all products.

It’s a sign the owner says other pot shops in town have called him to complain about. He said someone called the day the banner was stolen the first time.

He believes the suspects are people in the Tacoma cannabis industry.

“What I’m seeing is, you know, people are trying to intimidate us and bully us so they can control this market,” said Bean.

Tacoma Police Detective William Muse said the incidents with the explosives are “really concerning.” 

Detective Muse said they are looking into the allegations made by Bean about the suspects being in the industry, as well as looking into all possibilities. He said if this is a business dispute, this is not how it should be handled.

“The most important thing right now is that we want to make sure that everyone remains safe,” said Muse.

Muse said it is important that not only do new businesses feel welcomed in Tacoma, but that all community members feel safe. This is something Bean said he wants too.

“We shouldn’t be able to be intimidated or bullied or pushed around, not to be able to bring this to the people of Tacoma,” said Bean.

Bean now has his cameras being monitored so that if something happens again it can be addressed in real time.

Tacoma Police are asking anyone with information to contact them.

In addition to that, Bean said he is offering a $10,000 cash reward to anyone that shares information that leads to an arrest.

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