Law enforcement, local authorities, and local citizen groups have all been trying unsuccessfully to close Last Place on Earth, a notorious headshop in Duluth, Minnesota. The township seems to blame the owner, Jim Carlson, personally for the issue of synthetic drugs in their community. Ignoring the staggering demand locally for popular synthetics like bath salts and herbal incense, the city has been focusing on shutting down Carlson’s business and prosecuting him, his son, and his employees.
Carlson has always maintained that the products that he has been offering for sale in Last Place on Earth are legal federally and in regards to local and state laws. Officials, however, see it differently. Carlson faces many charges, ranging from drug and analog charges to conspiracy charges. Despite many arrests, however, he continues to re-open his business with synthetic products that are technically legal. Now he is finally offering to quit, but only if local law enforcement will meet him halfway.
According to a report on Friday in the local newspaper, the Duluth News Tribune, Carlson made his unconventional offer in a letter during his court appearances at the end of the week.
Following a court hearing this morning, Jim Carlson released a letter by his attorney, Randall Tigue to federal, county and city attorneys proposing the offer. “This letter will propose a global solution … enabling us to resolve (the issues) immediately and dispense with what promises to be years of protracted and expensive litigation,” Tigue wrote in a letter dated June 4.
The letter’s proposed solution is that Carlson will cease all current and future synthetic drug sales at Last Place on Earth provided that all pending criminal charges against him are dropped. The letter was released to the media on Friday, after giving state attorneys a chance to respond, according to Carlson and his attorney.
Those responses were mixed, Tigue said, with the city of Duluth responding favorably, and the county attorney’s office not responding at all so far. St. Louis County prosecutor Jonathan Holets contradicted that, saying he had responded to Tigue but wouldn’t respond in the media…The federal attorney offered to drop most of the charges against Carlson, but two serious charges would remain, Tigue said. Both Tigue and Carlson said that was unacceptable.
The Duluth police chief made a statement on Facebook that he would not support any deal that allows Carlson to avoid punishment, in no small part because the city has spent so much of their time and money trying to shut him down. Headshop owners all over the United States are now waiting to see if the local, state, and federal authorities will play ball, or if Carlson just managed to create more trouble for himself.
Source: Duluth News Tribune