A panel convened to implement a voter-approved Denver ordinance making possession of small amounts of marijuana the "lowest law enforcement priority" voted Wednesday to approve a resolution urging police to refrain from making arrests or issuing citations during the Democratic National Convention.
Mason Tvert, leader of the group Safer Alternative For Enjoyable Recreation, said city police and prosecutors are ignoring the will of the voters. He said the city still requires violators to show up in court, which he warned could clog the court system "After the Democratic National Convention ends, there will be hundreds of marijuana cases all showing up at the same time," Tvert said.
He told a community-based panel on marijuana enforcement charged with implementing the new law that preliminary figures show arrests are rising, not declining.
Panel members said that's proof police are ignoring the new law.
"The numbers speak for themselves," public defender Frank Moya told Vince DiCroce, the city attorney's director of enforcement.
Last year, the city prosecuted 1,600 cases. Tvert said based on current numbers, the city is on track to increase that to 1,900 this year, not counting any surge of arrests that might take place during the convention.
Rocky Mountain News