LAPD Pot Shop Update

Pot Shop Update from LAPD North Hollywood Division, Senior Lead Officer Catalano

Pot Shops

Over the last few years, it seemed that any vacant retail business was soon converted to a medical marijuana clinic or collective. Green crosses could be observed driving or walking down any major street and some small side streets within North Hollywood.

Small bungalows on side streets surrounded by multi-family apartments now were in the business of dispensing marijuana. Inside some apartment buildings were now newly fortified apartment units, converted into dispensaries. One such location in my area was even located across the street from an area park. Three dispensary locations were located just a stones throw away from the police station.

With the high grade marijuana today, it’s not uncommon to drive or walk through the NoHo area and smell the pungent odor. An obvious result of the magnitude of locations, some people openly smoking in public or just vehicles driving through the area.

With more locations dispensing marijuana at one time than all our fast food restaurants and Starbucks locations combined, it has become a free for all with new locations consistently opening up. North Hollywood had one of the largest concentrations of dispensaries throughout all of Los Angeles.

With the passing of voter approved Proposition D, we are seeing some changes. We still have some difficulty keeping an accurate count but the numbers are decreasing.

Not long ago, the North Hollywood community had 109 operating marijuana collectives within our patrol division of about 102, 000 residents. A ratio of about 1 / 1000. 1 – collectives per 1000 residents. The concept of supply and demand is easy to understand but North Hollywood seemed to have more then its share of locations. Especially when you consider we only have about 5 parks, 4 fire stations, 3 high schools, 2l and just one police station.

Today, we believe there are now 45 locations in operation. If everything goes as planned, we should see about 22 operating locations for the 22 square miles we patrol. Dispensaries may soon average out to about one location per square mile, compared to the previous number of 5 per square mile just a short time ago.

With this said, has anyone ever noticed how many auto repair shops are located in North Hollywood ?

Any questions , comments or concerns should be directed to me at

John Catalano Senior Lead Officer- Basic Car 15A39 Los Angeles Police Department North Hollywood Area

**** For information on Los Angeles theatre, tickets to theatre in North Hollywood’s NoHo Arts District, theatre reviews, the NoHo Event Calendar, restaurants, news and local businesses in NoHo, or anything and everything about the NoHo Arts Community, bookmark  

Lisa Bianconi
Author: Lisa Bianconi

Editor of