Newsbrief: Midwest Meth Madness -- Iowa and Illinois 4/4/03

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Compliant retailers in the Iowa-Illinois Quad Cities area aren't waiting for legislators to tell them to stop selling large quantities of ephedrine, pseudoephedrine, and other common substances that can be used to manufacture methamphetamine. And they're being proactive in reporting suspicious customers to police. The Moline (IL) Dispatch reported Sunday that Target, Kmart and Wal-Mart stores in the region are blocking large sales of such items and working with police to investigate people buying too much Sudafed.

Nancy Walsten, co-manager of the Moline Wal-Mart, told the Dispatch store cash registers are set to block sales of large quantities of any legal substance that could be on the meth-making suspicion list -- and that's not all. "Sometimes we get licenses of cars and turn them over to police," she said.

The Moline Kmart has a similar policy, according to store manager Tena Knapp. While Kmart won't block suspicious sales, it will narc out the buyers. "We have a list that we post that clerks look at. Anyone we see buying large quantities, we get their information from them," Knapp said, adding that the store will turn the information over to the police.

The Moline Target won't sell large quantities of items on a list provided by police, including batteries and glass bowls. "We pretty much track what they're coming through the lanes with," said manager Donna Winckler. "We don't report it to police, we just don't sell it."

Rene Sandoval, director of the Quad City Metropolitan Enforcement Group, confirmed to the Dispatch that retail personnel are regularly tipping off police to suspicious sales. "If someone comes in and exceeds the maximum amount, they'll notify us so we can do an investigation," he said. "I think the training they're receiving is definitely a step in the right direction and is a help to law enforcement."

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Issue #281, 4/4/03 Week Online Fundraising Update | Editorial: Reasonable Doubt Routinely | Victory in Tulia! | Rosenthal Asks for New Trial, Cites Juror Violations | Drug Czar Gives Up on Drugs and Terror Ad Campaign, Also Cancels Studies to Track Ads' Effectiveness | Drug Czar Sends Flunkies to Try to Stop Columbia, Missouri, Marijuana Initiative | DRCNet Interview: Marco Cappato, Member of European Parliament | Newsbrief: Reform Rumblings Begin in Brazil, While Commands Create Chaos | Newsbrief: Post-Assassination Serbian Crackdown Creates Drug Panic | Newsbrief: Jamaican Official Promises Ganja Decrim Bill Soon | Newsbrief: Belgian Marijuana Decriminalization Passes Final Hurdle | Newsbrief: Midwest Meth Madness -- Indiana | Newsbrief: Midwest Meth Madness -- Iowa and Illinois | Newsbrief: This Week's Corrupt Cop Story | Web Scan: New HR95, JAPHA on Syringe Sales, Reason, Mama Coca, OAS | Clinical Cannabis Conference CDs Available | Job Listings: Drug Policy Forum of Massachusetts and Albuquerque Health Care for the Homeless | The Reformer's Calendar

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