Study: Over 200,000 Marijuana Arrests in Colorado Over Past 25 Years

In the 25 years from 1986 to 2010, police and sheriffs’ departments in Colorado made 210,000 arrests for the crime of possessing small amounts of marijuana, according to a report released today by the Marijuana Arrest Research Project.

The study finds that cannabis arrests have risen sharply in the state, from 4,000 in 1986 to 10,500 in 2010, and that young people are most likely to among those arrested. According to the report, eighty-six percent of those arrested for cannabis offenses were age 34 or younger; 79 percent were 29 or younger, and 69 percent were 24 or younger.

The report also finds that African Americans and Latinos are arrested at greater rates than Caucasians despite being less likely to consume cannabis. African Americans residing in Colorado are arrested at three times the rate of whites, while Latinos are arrested at 1.5 times the rate of whites. The report is first study to document arrest rates of Latinos in Colorado.

Proponents of Amendment 64, The Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Act of 2012, believe that the arrest data emphasizes the need for passing the measure this November. If approved, A-64 would immediately amend state law to allow for the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana and/or the cultivation of up to six cannabis plants by adults.

– Read the entire article at NORML.



  1. animan425 on

    Don’t forget the fact that the WH introduced policies in 1981 (or was 82?) that enabled the DEA to pay (with taxpayer money, of course) local police departments for every drug bust they made and it wasn’t until after this policy went into effect that cops everywhere began to intentionally target any and all marijuana users.

    Understand, of course, that marijuana users, unlike heroin of meth users, make very easy targets because they generally don’t want to put up a fight and almost always surrender without resistance.

    It should then be obvious that one of the main reasons why there have been so many arrests for marijuana in CO, and every other state, has nothing to do with any dangers posed by the users or the substance, but because it is easy money for cops and they always get a pat on the back for it. After all, they “fear for the children” and are protecting them.

  2. Dirty Harry on

    The guy in the middle looks like Forest Gump. Run Forest, run! 🙂

  3. Anonymous on

    no one will escape the wrath of obama

  4. gutrod on

    There is a pattern here. Arresting all of those young people
    for the victimless crime of possessing small amounts of pot.
    The white ones that come from influential families were likely never convicted. We know the fate of the non whites.
    America is still living in the dark ages. Time to wake up and
    smell the sweet smell of change. Cannabis prohibition must stop.
    It is evil along with the war on drugs. Immoral.