LANSING | A St. John man faces drug and weapons charges in connection with the alleged sale of synthetic marijuana at his Lansing convenience store, about two blocks west of Reavis Elementary School, police said.
Rashad Shatat, 47, owner of Richie's Mini Mart, at 17257 Burnham Ave., was taken into custody Friday and charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver, possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver within 1,000 feet of a school, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a firearm with a revoked Firearm Owner's Identification Card. Shatat appeared in bond court at the 6th District Cook County Circuit Court in Markham, where he was released after paying 10 percent of a $50,000 bond, police said in a news release.
Undercover officers with the Lansing Police Department Tactical Unit began their investigation in January after receiving complaints that synthetic marijuana, otherwise known as Spice, was being sold out of the store. After an investigation that included undercover drug buys, police arrested Shatat on Friday, executing a search warrant at the convenience store.
Police seized more than 10,000 grams of suspected synthetic marijuana, numerous items of drug paraphernalia, a loaded handgun and nearly $3,000, police said.
The convenience store remains open, said Lt. Steven Roberts, of the Lansing Police Department. But Roberts said the drug operation is shut down and no further charges are expected.
The investigation was conducted with assistance from the Illinois State Police crime lab and the Cook County state's attorney's office.