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Mayor hopes education can combat drug problem

September 21, 2012
By Anthony Gaynor - Staff Writer , The Inter-Mountain

Elkins Police Chief H.R. White showed Elkins City Council members drug paraphernalia and marijuana to educate them about the city's drug problem during Thursday's council meeting.

"This is part of our effort to deal with our substance abuse problem we have in the city," Elkins Mayor Duke Talbott aid. "We want council members and our administrative officers to be educated on what it looks like so they can report it."

During the meeting, White led council members to the police department to show them a large marijuana plant that was recently confiscated while Elkins Police Department Cpl. C.D. Cross was on patrol.

Article Photos

The Inter-Mountain photo by Anthony Gaynor
Elkins Police Chief H.R. White discusses various drug paraphernalia with Elkins City Council members and Mayor Duke Talbott. Council members took time during Thursday’s council meeting to learn how to identify marijuana in their wards to assist the police department.

Cross found the plant outside a residence at 225 Diamond Street. The case led to the arrest of Velair Collins II after police discovered the plant, a working methamphetamine laboratory and several weapons in the home.

While White exhibited the large plant, he also handed around a small sealed jar containing dried marijuana so council could identify it as well.

"That is usually what is sold," White said of the brownish leafy substance in the jar.

White also passed around several small metal and wooden pipes that he described as "bowls" and a large object that he said was a "bong." The large glass structure prompted several questions from council members. Councilman Bob Woolwine, 1st Ward, asked why someone would use something so large when much smaller pipes are available.

He was told that some people say the smaller pipes burn up the drug quicker.

White also showed other smoking devices including one fashioned from a gas mask.

He also showed a box of tiny metal screens that he said are placed in smoking devices to prevent the inhalation of the actual plant instead of smoke.

He said officers also often find "blunts" on people who are arrested for drug use.

He said a "blunt" is a marijuana cigarette made from cigar papers.

White said the plant also has a very unique smell when being burned and said one will never forget it once smelling it.

"It is a unique smell," White said. "The closest thing is like burning tree limbs."

Talbott thanked White for the education session and urged council members to contact the police department if they suspect the drug is in their wards.

"If you see anything you believe is marijuana, please call Chief White," he said.

To contact the Elkins City Police, call 304-636-0678.



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