Friday, November 28, 2014

Legalizing Marijuana Reduces Crime

The use of marijuana has shown a two fold effect on the rate of crime. The first being the act of legalizing allows drug possession charges to go down dramatically. The other showing that the effect of the drug shows less tendency to commit violent crimes.

Colorado is almost one year into legalization of recreational use of marijuana. Millions of dollars have been saved by removing criminal penalties to possession of marijuana. Arrests for the possession of marijuana before legalization were upwards of 10,000 arrests a year.(Source) Colorado Center on Law & Policy projects a reduction in $12 million a year on criminal costs by legalizing marijuana. (Source) With the state tax excised on sales and other factors for legalization it is proposed to save upwards of $60 million for the state of Colorado. (Source)

A Study done in 2010 researched the crime rates after legalization of marijuana. They found that drug and property theft went up, while violent crime went down. Rates for aggravated assault, robbery and homicide show a large reduction in areas that legalize medical marijuana.(Source) In 2010 a study was conducted to see if marijuana users were repeat criminal offenders. The bulk of crime with the population was related to illegal possession and distribution of marijuana, not with any other crimes. By legalizing marijuana these crimes would cease to exist. (Source)

Dispensaries are a common target for theft and crime, in where they dispense large amounts of cannabis and manage sales in cash. Dispensaries because of the threat of theft implement security guards and camera surveillance which in turn has shown to reduce crime in the immediate vicinity of the dispensaries. (Source) The presence of dispensaries has not shown any increase in property theft or violent crime in the community. (Source)


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