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Duluth Head Shop Owner, Son Facing Serious Drug Charges

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A Duluth head shop owner and his son have been charged with allegedly selling Schedule 1 Stimulant Controlled Substances to undercover law enforcement agents, the St. Louis County Attorney’s Office announced Monday.

James Robert Carlson, 55, of Superior, Minn. and his son, Joseph Gellerman, 34, of Duluth, have each been charged with four counts of fourth-degree sale of a Schedule I, II or III controlled substance.

According to the criminal complaint, authorities began investigating the Last Place on Earth in response to a suspected drug overdose due to the use of a purported pipe cleaner/bath salts, called Riptide. Investigators were determining if Riptide was being sold at the head shop, which is owned by Carlson.

Then, undercover Task Force agents entered the store numerous times and purchased Riptide and another product labeled Everest, which were later determined to be Schedule 1 controlled substances.

“Though this will not be the only place to see a community joined together in a struggle against the dealers of these deadly poisons, some measure of justice and victory will truly be achieved if The Last Place is the last place in St. Louis County where valuable and vulnerable human beings are being peddled addiction and despair on such a devastating scale,” said County Attorney Mark Rubin.

Jon Holets, Assistant County Attorney, will be prosecuting the cases.

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