City of Duluth "Cautiously Optimistic" about Expected Synthetic Ruling

By KBJR News 1

July 17, 2013 Updated Jul 17, 2013 at 5:49 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) - City attorneys said they agreed with the court's initial decision not to grant The last Place on Earth an order blocking the city from enforcing the synthetic license requirement.

The magistrate, on Monday, said requiring a business to have a license to sell synthetics would not force Jim Carlson to incriminate himself.

On Tuesday Carlson and his attorney Randall Tigue submitted objections to the ordinances, claiming that they violate Carlson's 5th amendment Constitutional rights.

Since the city's synthetic ordinances took effect last week Duluth officials say there has been a 50 percent drop in police calls within a five block radius of Last Place on Earth.

Duluth spokesperson Daniel Fanning says both downtown businesses and tourists have been praising the effectiveness of the ordinances thus far.

"We literally had tourists call the Mayor's office and say, 'we came up to Duluth this weekend, in particular, because we heard synthetic drugs were not being sold, and we were so pleased to see the streets the way we envisioned them being—safe, secure, open and welcoming for tourists,'" said Fanning on Wednesday.

Fanning added that, with major tourism events like Tall Ships on the horizon, the effectiveness of the ordinances are all the more significant.

Carlson says his attorneys have advised him not to sell synthetic drugs until there is a final decision from the federal judge.

Fanning says they're expecting the ruling before the end of the week.

- Posted to the Web by Billy Wagness