Oakland Police Reportedly Discover Illegal Fireworks, Weapons at Unlicensed Smoke Shop
The Oakland Police Department has announced the recent discovery and dismantling of an unlicensed smoke shop, where they also found illegal fireworks and weapons.
According to a press release by the Oakland Police Department, the department’s Alcohol Beverage and Tobacco (ABAT) Unit conducted a special investigation at an unlicensed tobacco shop located on the 5000 block of Bancroft Avenue on July 13. During the operation, OPD officers uncovered a cache of illegal items, leading to the seizure of firearms, narcotics, and prohibited tobacco products.
The preliminary investigation revealed that four firearms, including two assault weapons, were confiscated by the ABAT Unit. As well, multiple extended magazines, illegal fireworks, marijuana, and flavored tobacco vapor products were recovered at the scene.
Police say that, although no arrests were made during the initial operation, the case is now being referred to the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office for potential charges. The Oakland City Attorney’s Office will also review the matter for further actions.
The ABAT Unit’s goal is to work with the community to educate store owners about the severe consequences associated with the sale of flavored tobacco products to individuals below the legal age of 21. By conducting special enforcement operations, the OPD intends to ensure the safety of youth in the local communities and hold smoke shops and business owners accountable for engaging in unlawful and harmful activities.
The sale of flavored tobacco products was banned in Oakland by Emergency Ordinance 13591, which was enacted by the Oakland City Council in 2020. California voters reaffirmed this prohibition on November 8, 2022, through Senate Bill 793, which restricts tobacco retailers from selling most flavored tobacco products, including vapes and e-cigarettes.
To report any prohibited sales of tobacco products or sales to minors in Oakland, community members are encouraged to contact the ABAT Complaint Hotline at (510) 777-8677.
Inquiries regarding this investigation should be directed to the Oakland Police Department’s Public Information Officer at (510) 777-8572.