Current, Former Cops Make Push to Legalize Marijuana Ahead of Election

By Elizabeth Flock
LEAP's pro-legalization police car in Chicago in September.
LEAP’s pro-legalization police car in Chicago in September.
Less than 50 days before Election Day, a group of current and former police officers are ramping up their efforts to push for the legalization of marijuana in the United States.
On Thursday, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, which is based in Medford, Mass., announced it would support get-out-the-vote efforts for Amendment 64, a Colorado ballot initiative to essentially legalize marijuana.
Tony Ryan, who spent 36 years on Denver’s police force and now serves on LEAP’s board, is pushing for Amendment 64. “I’d been thinking about this much of my career,” Ryan tells Whispers. “I saw that marijuana wasn’t the cause of disturbances, crimes, or homicides—something like alcohol was.”
Ryan says he often noticed police officers spending several hours processing a person found with only a small amount of marijuana. “That perturbed me,” he says. “It detracts from the police officer’s job in my mind.”
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