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Detroit Man Allegedly Made Millions With Illegal Weed Vending Machine
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The vending machine sold other drugs besides cannabis, as well.
Published on May 5, 2022

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Last month, Federal Agents conducting a raid on a Detroit resident’s home found thousands of dollars in cash, multiple firearms, and a vending machine stocked with cannabis and other drugs. 

Marcellus Cornwell told investigators who raided his home on March 16 that he was earning up to $2,000 a day through his unique business venture that operated for nearly four years netting him nearly $1.6 million per year, according to the court complaint.

“Whether it’s snacks that you’re thinking of having installed in your home or on the side of your home with the vending machine, just don’t do it,” US District Magistrate Judge Jonathan JC Grey informed Cornwell at his April 28 initial court appearance, according to MLive. “This is a unique case that’s been brought to the court’s attention and the court is concerned about the ease with which you allegedly provided narcotics for others.”

Having served time for previous felonies including robbery and identity theft, Cornwell is facing serious charges for possession and distribution just weeks before Detroit’s city council passed an ordinance allowing for the adult use of recreational cannabis. 

Although Cornwell was released on a $10,000 unsecured bond his conditions include travel restrictions, reporting requirements and other limitations, such as a ban on operating his vending machine. Along with the cannabis charges, the US Attorney’s Office has also charged Cornwell with being a felon in possession of a firearm. A charge that is punishable by up to 10 years in prison, after ATF agents seized 18 guns and a stockpile of ammunition from his home during their raid.

Weapons reportedly seized from Cornwell’s home were kept in a basement gun safe. He told agents they were purchased “from individuals off the street,” including at least two handguns that had previously been reported as stolen, the complaint said.

No word yet on whether the anonymous tip provided to the agents came from a disgruntled customer over Cornwell’s decision to not stock any Sour Skittles in his machine. 

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