SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Sixteen-year-old Tyler Lane is a big fan of the band Tool. For his birthday, Tyler’s grandfather, Kenneth Lane, took him to the Tool concert at Golden 1 Center.
But the birthday went bust when the pair says they were forced to leave the concert after being overcome by marijuana smoke. They say as soon as the lights went down, the pot came out.
“They didn’t need the smoke machine,” said Tyson.
“It looked like fireflies after a spring rain back in Tennessee,” said Kenneth.
“It got to the point where I was like; I don’t want to be here anymore,” remembers Tyson.
They decided to leave the concert but spoke to security on the way out.
“The security guard said, well pot’s legal, they can smoke it. This is a concert, and there’s nothing we can do about it,” recalled Kenneth.
The pair remembers seeing several security guards cracking down on cell phone use, but not the smoking.
“You’re going to tell them to put their phones away, but you’re going to let him smoke,” questioned Tyler.
Their complaints have been echoed by others who attended the same concert back in June.
“Everybody was smoking pot,” said Emily Steenbuck, who was also at that same concert.
“It was just clouds in my face,” she said.
Steenbuck says she watched security race toward one pot smoker near her.
“Literally, got his cell phone in his hand with the joint.”
Steenbuck was shocked when security told the pot smoker to stop recording but was allowed to continue smoking.
Complaints about pot smoking seem to have drifted to other events held at Golden 1. In a Yelp review, an Elk Grove woman who attended a Robbie Waters concert complained of getting a headache from pot fumes at the venue. In her review, she claims she was told, “That marijuana is legal in California, there is nothing they can do.'”
However, Kenneth Lane points out that California State law does not allow cigarette smoking inside public buildings. “But it’s OK to smoke pot?” asks Kenneth.
We reached out to Golden 1 Center, which handles security for concerts. A spokesperson said they could not address these individual cases but released the following statement to CBS13:
“Golden 1 Center staff are trained to enforce the venue’s no smoking policy. It is always our goal to deliver the best possible guest experience, and we value feedback to better serve our guests.”
Kenneth just wants the laws to be enforced.
“I really don’t care if people want to smoke pot, but there’s no smoking in an enclosed venue,” he says.
After CBS13 contacted Golden 1 Center about the story, the Lane’s were refunded the cost of their concert tickets and parking.
We also reached out to Tool’s management who told us, “The venue is responsible for enforcement of local smoking ordinances.”
California law prohibits smoking of anything lighted or heated that includes e-cigs and vapes, in any indoor public places. The first fine can cost you a hundred bucks.