This week, New Mexico’s Senate thought about a bill that would have allowed voters to choose whether or not they support legal cannabis. As a result, the arguments became centered around Colorado, the lawmakers’ home state. As Sen. William Sharer fought against the measure, he referenced Denver’s crime rate, which has gone up since recreational cannabis was legalized it in 2012. In the end, the bill did not pass, 24-17.

Cannabis policy experts, as well as officials from Colorado, warn people to be careful when going over the impacts of cannabis, which are being debated by the United States Supreme Court often. This week, justices are going to meet up to discuss a lawsuit over cannabis set forth against Colorado by contiguous states. However, there is one thing that legalization supporters, opponents, as well as neutrals in Colorado assent on; Denver’s crime rate rising has nothing to with cannabis.

“Crime is up,” Sonny Jackson, Denver police spokesman, stated, ” but I don’t know if you can relate it to marijuana.”

Colorado voters legalized recreational cannabis in 2012 and since then, the amount of crimes in Denver has gone up by almost forty-four percent, annual figures the city reported to the National Incident-Based Reporting System show. Before, cops have stated that the system may not have the right number of crimes counted and instead cite the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report, which indicates a 3.5% growth over the same time. Both of these increases can be adjusted when population growth is considered.

However, despite the counting system, cannabis has not had much of a contribution to the measurement. In 2012, city safety officials started following crimes they believed were associated with cannabis. During the first year of their study, Denver tracked 223 offenses, 172 of which were related to the cannabis industry, which was limited only to medical cannabis at the time.

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