Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Don’t Increase Crime

Medical marijuana dispensaries aren’t attracting crime in Colorado Springs, the second Colorado city where police have concluded that pot shops don’t increase crime.

The Gazette newspaper reports that Colorado Springs police have yet to find a correlation between the city’s 175 or so dispensaries and increased crime. Denver police made a similar conclusion earlier this year.

The 41 criminal reports at marijuana businesses in Colorado Springs over 18 months compared to 797 robberies in businesses and houses in the same period. That rate isn’t especially high compared to other businesses, police said.

Police spokesman Sgt. Darrin Abbink said there’s not enough data to suggest marijuana businesses are attracting crime.

“It’s all going to depend on what the person is looking to steal,” he said. “I don’t think the data really supports (dispensaries) are more likely to be targeted at this point. There’s not really enough information yet.”

The Colorado Springs Planning Commission is expected to vote this week on new zoning rules for medical marijuana dispensaries.

The proposed regulations would keep dispensaries in industrial and commercial zones, as well as 400 feet from such areas as schools and drug treatment facilities. If approved during the commission’s meeting Thursday, the issue would be sent to the city council for a final vote.

In January, police in Denver concluded that the projected robbery and burglary rate for storefront dispensaries in 2009 was on par with that of pharmacies. The analysis was the first time Denver police compared crime at dispensaries with that at other businesses.

– Article from CBS News.