Apr 1, 2021 - News

Criminal charges upheld for Ankeny CBD shop owner

Illustration of a CBD oil dropper crossed with a gavel.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

An Ankeny store owner is still facing criminal charges for selling CBD to undercover cops in 2019 — despite new laws allowing her to sell those same products without penalty.

Why it matters: As cannabis and its derivatives become legal nationwide, activists are calling for the expungement of non-violent convictions that can have long-term detrimental effects on people.

Flashback: In 2019, undercover cops from the MINE task force went to Lacie Navin's Your CBD Store in Ankeny and bought gummies, lotions and tinctures from her.

  • She was arrested and charged with three counts of controlled substance violation — a class D felony, and one count of failure to affix a drug stamp.
  • Her bank accounts were also seized since they were considered a part of drug trafficking.

But in 2020, the Legislature passed a bill clarifying the state's law and legalizing most CBD sales (consumable CBD still needs state approval).

Navin, a mom to three kids, said she felt it was okay to sell CBD because of the 2018 Farm Bill and subsequent Iowa Hemp Act — which legalized the production of hemp containing less than .3% THC.

  • Iowa still considered over-the-counter CBD products illegal at the time. But due to inconsistent enforcement, you couldn't really walk around Des Moines without seeing it for sale.

Since her arrest, Navin said she's worked six jobs just to stay afloat and support her family.

  • "A lot of it is just so unjust to me — it's very hard to see other places selling CBD during this entire time," Navin said.

What they're saying: The state says she sold the products before the Iowa Hemp Act was officially approved, according to court documents.

  • Polk County Attorney John Sarcone declined to comment, citing the need to protect Navin's right to a "fair trial."

What's next: Navin just reopened all three Your CBD stores in Ankeny, Urbandale and West Des Moines.

  • She is in plea deal negotiations with the county.

This story first appeared in the Axios Des Moines newsletter, designed to help readers get smarter, faster on the most consequential news unfolding in their own backyard.


Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Des Moines.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Des Moines stories

No stories could be found

Des Moinespostcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Des Moines.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more