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Employee shot, killed during pot shop robbery in Tacoma

Tacoma police officers attempted to save the employee's life but he died at the scene.

TACOMA, Wash — Tacoma police are investigating after a marijuana dispensary employee was shot and killed during a robbery Saturday night.

The robbery happened just after 10 p.m. at the World of Weed dispensary on Portland Avenue and East 32nd Street.

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Arriving officers reportedly found a male employee with a gunshot wound. Tacoma police tried to save the man but he died at the scene. 

The victim was identified March 23 as 29-year-old Jordan Brown of Gig Harbor. The Medical Examiner's Office said the cause of death was a gunshot wound to the neck.

No other details were given and there is no information on a suspect or suspects.

This was the third time in less than a week someone was killed related to a pot shop robbery. A suspect was killed by police after a pot shop robbery in Bellevue's Factoria neighborhood on Wednesday. The incident ended in a standoff in the backyard of a home. Police said the suspect was shot and killed after opening fire on police.

A door security employee shot and killed a suspect during an attempted robbery at a pot shop in Covington Thursday.

Although traumatic, getting robbed is quickly becoming a common experience for Washington’s dispensaries. Dozens of dispensaries have been hit in the past three months throughout Western Washington, according to robbery data compiled by marijuana shop owners.

Mike Pellicciotti, Washington state’s treasurer, spent the past week in Washington, D.C., meeting with members of the state’s Congressional delegation to help pot shop owners and their employees.

Pellicciotti, a Democrat, said the number of pot shops targeted by armed robbers is increasing, and he said the motive is simple. 

Pellicciotti blamed federal drug laws that prohibit national banks from getting involved with pot shops in Washington state, causing most pot shop owners to make their stores cash-only.

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