Crack Pipe by flickr user TedsBlogEnlarge Photo
Detroit has a bad reputation for crime, poverty and heavy drug use. A recent investigation by a local CBS News affiliate isn’t going to help the city live down that legacy any time soon, as it found crack pipes for sale at local businesses, including gas stations.
The pipes were found at gas stations and convenience stores in Detroit’s Sixth Precinct, as well as in suburban neighborhoods like Allen Park and Dearborn Heights.
Since direct sales of drug paraphernalia are illegal in most states, the pipes are sold as novelty items, typically disguised as a glass-barreled ball-point pen or as a glass vial containing a miniature flower. Sales of the “novelty items” are brisk according to former Detroit police officer David Mahalab, who points out that short-term profits are often offset by increased drug-related crime.
The report should serve as a warning to motorists: always be aware of your surroundings, and pay close attention when you stop to fill up your car. If your local gas station is selling crack pipes, you may want to consider finding another place to fill up.