Crack Pipe Vending Machines Turn Up In NYC Suburb


David Krayden Ottawa Bureau Chief
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Somebody in Long Island is trying to make some money by selling crack pipes from vending machines, police say.

As WABC-TV news reported, locals discovered three of the machines believed to dispense crack pipes over the weekend and destroyed one. Another has been removed by the town of Brookhaven. Addicts could obtain a crack pipe by putting eight quarters into the machine that purported to sell “sketch pens” but instead provided the crack paraphernalia.

Many people thought the dispensers were offering simple writing material.

“You think you’ve heard of everything,” Brookhaven Supervisor Ed Romaine told a Monday news conference covered by WABC. “I continue to be surprised by some of the audacity of those that would break the law in promoting drugs and drug paraphernalia.”

Displaying a sample of the vending machine’s wares, Romaine said, “It’s a crack pipe. It’s a ceramic, glass pipe disguised as a pen … There’s a filter in there that you use to smoke crack.”

“It is an interesting situation: Is it a pen? Is it drug paraphernalia?” Dean Murray, a New York Assemblyman, said at the same press conference. “I don’t remember ever buying a pen that came with a pack of filters, so I think it’s pretty obvious.”

Suffolk County police are considering pressing charges against whoever installed the machines — if they can find them.

Brookhaven council member Michael Loguercio mused, “To sell a pipe is not illegal, but this is considered drug paraphernalia. And it also is being dispensed from a machine that was installed illegally per town code.”

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