Published 7:19 PM EDT Sep 12, 2018
Complaints came in to officials in the Long Island town of Coram: A vending machine selling "crack pipes" had quietly appeared in front of a shopping center on Middle Country Road.
A second machine, also in Coram, was identified as local authorities investigated who placed the devices, according to Brookhaven town officials who oversee the community.
Councilman Michael Loguercio received a call Friday from a fire department official "with regard to what appeared to be crack pipe dispensers, disguised as pen dispensers," he said in a statement this week. That kick-started an investigation between Brookhaven and Suffolk County officials to identify who placed the machines.
While the blue-and-white boxes featured the words "Sketch Pens" across them, per WABC-TV, Brookhaven spokesman Jack Krieger told CNN they are "actually repurposed tampon dispensers."
Once eight quarters were inserted, the machine produced "pens" consisting of ink, a glass tube and a filter, WABC-TV reported.
“Is it drug paraphernalia?” Dean Murray, a New York assemblyman, said at a Monday press conference, according to McClatchy. “I don’t remember ever buying a pen that came with a pack of filters, so I think it’s pretty obvious.”
Loguercio, the councilman, told the news agency the products are considered drug paraphernalia and were sold in an illegally installed machine, according to town code.
Supervisor Ed Romaine said in a statement that Brookhaven would work with Suffolk County police "to identify more locations and will cooperate fully to find those responsible."
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