According to federal agency, the legalization of cannabis has little or no impact on the rates of violent crime or property crime. But, cannabis regulation appears to be linked to a long-term decline in state burglaries.

In fact, previous attempts to understand the relationship between cannabis legalization and crime . Have yielded mixed results. So,it was just clear that legalizing cannabis would allow police to better solve certain crimes. Besides, that Oregon and Washington had seen their violence statistics decrease.

The Study

The study, published in the Justice Quarterly journal and funded by the National Institute of Justice. Found that rates of violent and property crime were not affected in the years following legalization in Colorado and Washington.

“Our results suggest that the legalization and sale of cannabis have had little or no effect on major crimes committed in Colorado or Washington,” the document concludes. “We found no statistically significant long-term effects of recreational cannabis laws or the introduction of retail sales on rates of violent crime or property crime in these states. »

In order to determine the impact of legalization. Researchers developed experimental models comparing crime rates in Colorado and Washington with those in 21 states where cannabis is not legal from 1999 to 2016. Also, the analysis is based on FBI data on violence, property, car theft, burglary or robbery.

The results

After legalization, a temporary increase in property crime was concise in both states. As well as a sharp increase in violent assaults in Washington.

Consequently, the only significant long-term effect that has been noted by the researchers is :

the decrease in the burglary rate in Washington.

In short , our results suggest that there may have been immediate increases in crime at the time of legalization. Although short-term increases appear to suggest an increase in cannabis-related crime. we do not recommend this interpretation. Since, these increases do not correspond to permanent changes and could be induced by the short gap between legalization and the start of sales. »

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