Marijuana home grows danger study not timed to hurt Amendment 64, pot opponent says
On Monday, before Amendment 64's proponents lost a court case over excised Blue Book language, and prior to Governor John Hickenlooper announcing his opposition to the measure, law enforcement officials held a press conference touting a study about the dangers of marijuana grows. Was the latter part of a coordinated campaign to undermine the measure? A study backer says no.
"We actually wanted to release it as early as we could, because it's a safety issue for the cops," says Tom Gorman, director of the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area. "But the report wasn't finalized until relatively recently."
This isn't the first time Gorman's been asked such questions. In August, the Rocky Mountain HIDTA released another much-ballyhooed pot report, this one presenting evidence that Colorado medical marijuana is being illegally diverted. But he laughs when asked if we should expect another damning study prior to the election.
"I generally know what's going on, and I haven't heard of another one coming out -- so you can tell the other side to relax," he says.
However, he adds this caveat: "There may be a big raid or something like that, which I can't control."
Whether other officials can is another issue raised of late -- specifically in the wake of the Silver Lizard dispensary bust in August, handled by the Colorado Attorney General's office occupied by vocal MMJ and pot opponent John Suthers.
Regarding the marijuana-grows study, our William Breathes was critical of it. He notes that the analyzed grows were all identified by police, suggesting that cops may have chosen particularly horrific examples to bolster their point. Likewise, he regards comments equating marijuana grows and meth houses to be exaggerated and hysterical.
Gorman takes on these arguments one by one.
Continue to read Tom Gorman's responses, as well as the marijuana grow study.