Deputies Shut Down Major E-Hash Operation

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LYNN HAVEN -- Local authorities say they're now seeing some instances of a drug craze first reported last week. Bay County Sheriff's Investigators busted two people accused of selling a form of marijuana that can be smoked in electronic-cigarettes.

Deputies shut down a major drug operation involving the substance. That's what Lynn Haven resident Robert Carter has to say when he found out about a major drug bust that took place a few doors away from his home.

Lynn Haven Resident Robert Carter said, "It's a little scary knowing that it's that close to you and I have grandchildren. I don't want things like that going on around here."

Bay County Sheriff's deputies say they arrested Hoa and Jennifer Nguyen Thursday on several charges including possession of marijuana with intent to sell and distribute but the path to their arrest has a few twists.

Deputies arrested three juveniles for breaking into cars in the area. They told authorities they were trying to pay for marijuana and pointed them to the owners of this house.

Investigators found 130 grams of hash wax, 80 grams of marijuana, 100 hash oil vaporizers, and $25,000 in their Derby Woods home.
Authorities believe people are using the hash oil and wax for their electronic cigarettes.

Bay Co. Sheriff Frank McKeithen said, "We were hoping that we wouldn't see any but unfortunately Panama City spring break, we start seeing things we haven't seen before. This is something we hope we see the last of it."

McKeithen says the rising trend of e-hash is something he's never seen before and believes it will be hard to crack down on.

"It's going to be pretty difficult for us to determine if your electronic cigarette is smoking hash oil or blueberry vapor,” said McKeithen.

Residents who use e-cigs like Carter say they're surprised about the situation.

"There's always people going to find ways to do things and the way they do it, you can never tell,” said Carter.

Authorities arrested the Nguyens for allegedly selling marijuana and ecstasy in 2005.

Sheriff's investigators say they'll be contacting Attorney General Pam Bondi's office about the e-hash trend.