NEWS RELEASE 19-174 - OCTOBER 17, 2019
The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office cited eight local store clerks for selling vaping products to minors during a recent undercover operation in partnership with the Florida Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco, Bureau of Law Enforcement.
Undercover personnel were sent into 29 stores throughout Sarasota County on Monday. The following businesses were found to be in violation of selling a nicotine product or nicotine dispensing devices to a minor. Clerks at all eight locations were given a misdemeanor Notice to Appear citation.
1. DNA Vaping Lounge Sarasota, 5045 Fruitville Road, Unit 165, Sarasota
2. Smoker Friendly/Tobacco Depot #723, 4461 Bee Ridge Road, Sarasota
3. Fantacy Vape and Smoke Shop, 2868 Ringling Boulevard, Sarasota
4. Ignite Vapors, 3251 17th Street, Unit 170, Sarasota
5. Cheap Smokes, 1839 South Tamiami Trail, Venice
6. Skybudz Smoke Shop Inc., 3135 North Tamiami Trail, Sarasota
7. Gateway Vape, 6534 Gateway Avenue, Sarasota
8. Ryo Tasteful Tobacco, 5761 Beneva Road, Sarasota
The remaining 21 stores in Sarasota, Venice, Englewood and North Port were found in compliance.
“Vape pens and e-cigarettes are becoming more popular these days than traditional cigarettes,” commented Sheriff Knight. “That is why we are being proactive by trying to make sure instruments that support the use of addictive tobacco, THC and other products isn’t getting into the wrong hands. We will continue our education and enforcement efforts so long as there are children to protect and businesses to hold accountable.”