Crime Up in Denver Five Months into Legal Pot Sales
The misinformation continues regarding how Denver's crime rate has changed following Colorado's legalization of recreational marijuana sales in January.
Vox.com claims that "5 months into legal pot sales, crime is down in Denver." Nothing could be farther from the truth. Actually, after five months of legal pot sales, crime is way up in Denver.
Denver's crime statistics for the first five months of 2013 and 2014 are available here. The total number of reported offenses has increased by more than 10 percent, from 17,450 in 2013 up to 19,234 in 2014.
German Lopez at Vox states that "both violent and property crimes are down 1.9 percent and 11.5 percent, respectively, from January through May 2014 compared to the same time period last year." Nope. "Crimes Against Property" (aka property crimes) are only down 7.5 percent compared to the same period last year, but this has been more than offset by a 24-percent increase in "Crimes Against Persons," another 24-percent increase in "Crimes Against Society," and a 155-percent increase in "All Other Offenses" since 2013.
Of course, Denver is not the only city in Colorado. Over in Aurora, violent crime is up 10 percent so far this year after pot legalization, with sex assaults up 30 percent and aggravated assaults up 24 percent. In Englewood, robberies have increased 11 percent since 2013, and burglaries are up more than 68 percent.
Whether or not you support marijuana legalization, the facts are the facts. Total crime is up in Denver this year.