Riot Police

Colorado Police Chiefs Holding Conference for Nonexistent Marijuana Problem

Mason Tvert, a spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project, says that “legalized marijuana in Colorado has not caused more crime or increased the number of children using it.”  In fact, the Colorado State Patrol recently released a report stating that troopers handed out 347 citations involving only marijuana in 2015, which is seven fewer than the year before. Yet despite the lack of hard evidence, the Colorado Association of Chiefs of Police just began a 3 day training conference for police officers to help them catch drivers they believe are high. They are calling it “Colorado Two Years Later – Training Conference for Law Enforcement.”

The police website says this about it – “This conference is designed to impart new knowledge about the current state of affairs regarding marijuana and the effects of marijuana seen by Colorado law enforcement. There will be classes on evidence, seizures, toxicology, SFST update, warrants, felony DUI’s, Marijuana 101 course, prosecutor presentations, department of revenue reports, and other topics concerning marijuana.”

This is not a free conference either; the cost for the 3 day course, March 16-March 18, is $395, but that’s not really a bad deal; after all, lunch is included. It is expected that 700 police officers will attend.

George Brauchler, 18th Judicial District Attorney, spoke to the media at the conference and said that “Marijuana legalization has caused a host of problems — from increased cartel activity to a rising number of school kids using the drug. But a lack of hard data makes it impossible to prove that legalizing weed has increased crime, made the roads less safe or increased use among youth.” But of course he would say that to the media. After all this is a guy trying to get re-elected, according to his twitter feed.

“Cops will go out of their way to hold a press conference and say they think there is a problem. We have yet to see any of the doomsday scenarios predicted by opponents come true since legalization,” said Tvert.

It is quite obvious that despite its legal status in the state of Colorado, users of marijuana are looked at as likely criminals and only a shift in perception by law enforcement will change this – let’s hope it happens soon.

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