Wayzata Vape Store Denied License Amid Underage Sales Violations

On Tuesday, the Wayzata City Council voted unanimously to deny the 2021 tobacco sales license for North Shore Vape, LLC on Wayzata Boulevard. City staff recommended the action based on the applicant’s pattern, over several years, of lacking compliance controls and multiple illegal sales of vaping products to individuals under 21.

In 2020, Wayzata Police received four complaints of underage person purchasing vaping products from North Shore Vape.

Additional reports of underage person inside the store were made by both parents and officers.

One report from a parent indicated an 8th grade student, their child’s classmate, was seen leaving North Shore Vape with vaping products. Officers also observed children inside the business who they identified as being as young as 16 years old on multiple occasions, although store management (and signage) indicates no one under 18 is allowed in the store.

According to the city, the manager of the store failed a compliance check in September 2020 when he sold vaping products to an underage person.

“He passed two, failed one (compliance checks). (The city) waited 45 days to notify him of it. 45 days,” said the owner’s attorney James Ventura during the city council meeting. “I can’t understand the purpose or reason unless it was to have this day, to try to punish him by denying his license and it is the only business he does out of that shop.”

Wayzata Police identified a former employee who indicated, in a recorded statement, that the owner encouraged them to “sell to everyone regardless of age.”

“I am confident in the Chief’s report and disappointed to see what I saw and as a parent in this community,” said Councilmember Johanna McCarthy.

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