Weed Watch: Denver Police Ignore Pot Possession Law

Although 54% of Denver, Colo., voters approved a measure last month legalizing possession of up to 1 oz. of marijuana by adults over 21, law enforcers continue on as though the law doesn't exist

Although 54% of Denver voters approved a measure last month legalizing possession of up to 1 oz. of marijuana by adults over 21, it appears local law enforcers are continuing on as though the law doesn't exist. At least that's how it appears to 39-year-old real estate consultant Eric Footer, reports the Rocky Mountain News, who was arrested by Denver PD on marijuana possession charges last month, one day after the election results were certified.

Footer was pulled over by police on Nov. 17, the daily reports, and, thinking the new Alcohol-Marijuana Equalization Initiative was in full effect, allowed the cops to search his car, which turned up a vitamin bottle full of pot and netted Footer a $200 citation. But Footer doesn't want to pay and, with the support of drug reform advocates, he intends to challenge the ticket in court. "I was just angry and confused. I didn't understand how the law could be in effect and not be enforced," Footer told the RMN. "It doesn't make sense. It either is or it isn't the law."

While legalized marijuana possession may be the law in Denver, it isn't the law for Colorado, note officials, who say they'll continue to prosecute pot possessors as they always have. "The state law is still in effect and cases will be prosecuted now, just like they were before," Assistant City Attorney Vince DiCroce told the daily. "We're going to just continue to do what we've done." And doing it they are: In the weeks since the law, ostensibly, went into effect, police have filed at least a dozen pot possession cases against adults who would otherwise have been protected by the new law.

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Eric Footer, Weed Watch, marijuana, Alcohol-Marijuana Equalization Initiative, Vince DiCroce

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