E-cigarettes to be sold at Va. Beach jail canteen

FILE - In this April 19, 2013 file photo, a sampling of electronic cigarette supplies are seen in a shop in Oklahoma City. The city of Bismarck, N.D., is the latest city in North Dakota to ban the sale of electronic cigarettes to people under the age of 18, and Williston, N.D., is likely not far behind. E-cigarette inhalers are an odorless, vapor-emitting substitute for tobacco cigarettes. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki, File)

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) — Inmates at the Virginia Beach Correctional Center soon will able to buy electronic cigarettes at the jail’s canteen.

Virginia Beach Sheriff Ken Stolle tells media outlets that a poll he conducted showed 85 percent of the jail’s roughly 1,400 inmates want access to the devices.

Virginia Beach Sheriff Ken Stolle. Photo courtesy Virginia Beach Sheriff’s Office.

The battery-powered devices heat a liquid nicotine solution and create vapor that’s inhaled.

Stolle says each e-cigarette is equivalent to two and a half packs of cigarettes and will sell for $15. He expects the jail’s profit to be about $10 apiece. The revenue will be used for inmate programs and to hire more deputies.

Stolle says he will discourage inmates from using e-cigarettes . But he will allow them to make their own health decisions.

The devices will go on sale this month.