Wake-Up Call: Charlie Brown hits the mean streets of Los Angeles

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City Council rep Charlie Brown has taken the lead on corralling medical marijuana dispensaries in Denver. And he's taking the task seriously -- so seriously that, last week, he took his cowboy hat and traveled to Los Angeles (using campaign funds, not taxpayer dollars) to check out that city's booming dispensary scene.

Think McCloud, hunting down bad bud rather than bad guys.

At the urging of Denver police officers, Brown met with officials from the Los Angeles Police Department, as well as Carmen Trutanich, the attorney for the City of Los Angeles, who's now working with the L.A. city council on the third draft of a bill to regulate more than a thousand dispensaries now open in the city. "They haven't done anything in two-and-a-half years," Brown says. "And they told me, 'If you don't start now, you will really be in trouble.'

"We had a fascinating discussion. It was an eye-opener," Brown continues. But more fascinating was his tour of dispensaries with an undercover officer. "That was amazing. They get very aggressive there. They approach you. On Venice Beach, also called Muscle Beach, they come right out and try to drag you in..."

Compared to that carny atmosphere, Denver's dispensaries are, well, kind. "It was that aggressiveness that we haven't seen here yet," Brown says.

But we could, L.A. officials warn. And Trutanich offered these parting words for Brown: "If you don't take charge of this, it will take charge of you."


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