Rand Study Finds Less Crime Near Pot Dispensaries
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Rand Study Finds Less Crime Near Pot Dispensaries
Posted by CN Staff on September 21, 2011 at 10:54:52 PT
By John Hoeffel, Los Angeles Times
Source: Los Angeles Times 
Los Angeles -- Medical marijuana dispensaries — with storerooms of high-priced weed, registers brimming with cash and some clientele more interested in getting high than getting well — are often seen as magnets for crime, a perception deepened by a few high-profile murders.But a report from the Rand Corp. reaches a startling conclusion: The opposite appears to be true.
In a study of crime near Los Angeles dispensaries — which the investigators call the most rigorous independent examination of its kind — the Santa Monica-based think tank found that crime actually increased near hundreds of pot shops after they were required to close last summer."What I would take away from it is maybe there should just be a little bit less fear about having dispensaries," said Mireille Jacobson, a health economist who was the lead researcher. "Hopefully, this injects a little bit of science into the discussion."The researchers compared the 10 days before the city's medical marijuana ordinance took effect June 7, 2010, with the 10 days after, when many of the more than 400 illegal dispensaries shut down — if only briefly.They found a 59% increase in crime within three-tenths of a mile of a closed dispensary compared to an open one and a 24% increase within six-tenths of a mile.The city attorney's office, which has argued in court proceedings that the number of dispensaries needs to be reduced to deal with "well-documented crime," called the report's conclusions "highly suspect and unreliable," saying that they were based on "faulty assumptions, conjecture, irrelevant data, untested measurements and incomplete results."In particular, the office challenged the idea that most dispensaries closed June 7, 2010, and were not open for at least 10 days. And it offered its own conjecture for the rise in crime: infighting among collective members, increased traffic for pot fire sales and customers disgruntled to find their dispensary closed.Jacobson said Rand did not assume dispensaries shut down exactly on that date and said that, if more of them closed earlier or later, it would mean only that crime increased more than the report found.The researchers acknowledge that the results are subject to a large margin of error, so the increase in crime within less than a third of a mile could range from as low as 5.4% to as high as 114%."These are noisy data over a short period of time," Jacobson said. But she noted that the numbers, which were subjected to complex statistical analyses, clearly show crime increased.The researchers did not try to draw conclusions on why crime increased, but offered the hypothesis that dispensaries may heighten security in the areas around them because they employ cameras and guards, increase late-night foot traffic, replace illicit street sales and draw heavier police patrols.In a review of crime statistics from 2009 ordered by Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck, the LAPD found that banks were much more likely to be robbed than dispensaries.Cmdr. Andrew Smith, a department spokesman, said the LAPD had not yet reviewed the report, but would do so.The Rand report notes that police departments in Denver and Colorado Springs, Colo., also studied crime around dispensaries and found no evidence that they attracted crime.None of this surprises dispensary owners or their lawyers, who note that their surveillance records are sometimes requested by police to investigate crimes unrelated to selling marijuana."It's some empirical evidence that demonstrates that the security measures that make it safe for patients to obtain their medical marijuana also serve the community," said David Welch, a lawyer who has represented many Los Angeles dispensaries.Yamileth Bolanos, who runs PureLife Alternative Wellness Center on South La Cienega Boulevard and also is president of the Greater Los Angeles Collectives Alliance, said, "I know that there's no crime around here. We watch everything."But Steve Whitmore, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, strenuously disagreed with the report's conclusions."Every time we shut down a dispensary, the crime and the disorder decrease," he said.The report looks at such crimes as thefts and assaults, but not "disorder," nuisances such as loitering, double parking, loud noises and graffiti that sparked anger among neighborhood activists. Whitmore said those complaints are often what causes the department to act.Eagle Rock, which has about a dozen dispensaries, has long been one of the city's pot hot spots.Michael Larsen, president of the neighborhood council, said he only knows of one dispensary-related crime — an armed robbery — but has heard countless complaints from irritated neighbors.He said most of the dispensaries that initially closed last summer have reopened, defying the city."Our main concern is the crime of illegal dispensaries illegally selling marijuana," Larsen said. "That's the crime that we're concerned about."Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)Author: John Hoeffel, Los Angeles TimesPublished: September 21, 2011Copyright: 2011 Los Angeles TimesContact: letters latimes.comWebsite: Medical Marijuana Archives 
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Comment #26 posted by ekim on September 28, 2011 at 09:00:34 PT
Thanks afterburner
he was on the Diane Rehm show yesterday
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Comment #25 posted by afterburner on September 27, 2011 at 09:53:50 PT
ekim #23 & other Imagineers
Imagine the Future when hemp & cannabis are legal crops providing many new jobs & tax revenues. Imagine the Future when alternative energy is taken seriously by the federal government, again providing many new jobs & tax revenues. Imagine the Future of ecologically sound and sustainable technologies & resource management, again providing many new jobs & tax revenues & a cleaned-up planet. The Second Industrial Revolution lobbyists bribe & belittle Congress into maintaining the outdated technologies that are destroying the environment and the economy for the majority of the American public. It's time to look seriously into the future of emerging Third Industrial Revolution technologies using Jeremy Rifkin's Five Pillars approach:Jeremy Rifkin.
Author, 'The Third Industrial Revolution: How Lateral Power is Transforming Energy, the Economy, and the World'.
The Third Industrial Revolution: Toward A New Economic Paradigm (EXCERPT).
Posted: 9/25/11 06:03 PM ET.
Read more Third Industrial Revolution , Politics News
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Comment #24 posted by GentleGiant on September 27, 2011 at 05:38:24 PT:
We The People: Reschedule Marijuana to Schedule 3
Dear friends,I wanted to let you know about a new petition I created on We the People, a 
new feature on, and ask for your support. Will you add your 
name to mine? If this petition gets 5,000 signatures by October 27, 2011, 
the White House will review it and respond!Re-schedule Marijuana to the same level as Marinol, the government's synthetic equivalent of Marijuana, to Schedule 3.
Besides more than 22,000 studies that shows the absurdities of the Federal Government's 'flat earth' policy, that marijuana has no medical value, is completely absurd. Given that our body produces the same cannabinols that serves as a major life-functioning element within us to keep us alive. Given that there is more than 7000 years of written medical usage of marijuana. Given that U.S. doctors prescribed marijuana for nearly 100 years until abolished in 1937. Given that research shows that marijuana kills all cancerous cells, while leaving the healthy cells alone. Its time to end this blatant fraud perpetrated upon the American people. Re-schedule marijuana to schedule 3, the same as marinol, and let our doctors and researchers solve this problem, the greatest killer known to man, CancerYou can view and sign the petition here:
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Comment #23 posted by ekim on September 26, 2011 at 22:21:37 PT
guess i need a e to breathe better
does anyone know what kind of thin film solar pannel that has been in the news. why it cost more than the wafer kind and why are we not being told if it has good uses and so what if the govt has to kick start it cause it made here in the US and maybe it will have more uses than the hard pannel -- at any rate we never get a clear picture of what is the way power is being made and educate us so we will understand.look this was from back in 2004 where are the thin pannels and the cellulose ethanol plants we need as a Country willing to show the children how to use renewable energy across the globe.Golden, Colo. - Two technologies developed by the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory are among this year's most significant innovations, as judged by Research & Development (R&D) Magazine.The Laboratory's two R&D 100 Awards for 2004 are for an innovative, lower-cost method for transforming plant material into the sugars that can be used to make fuels and chemicals, and a thin-film solar cell that produces electricity directly from sunlight, which has greater efficiency, and is lighter weight and more flexible than previous devices.This year's announcement brings to 37 the number of R&D 100 Awards garnered by NREL."Once again, the technologies developed by our Laboratory's researchers are being acknowledged for their importance to the nation," said Stan Bull, NREL associate director for science and technology. "It's particularly gratifying that the R&D 100 Awards this year include two NREL technologies that can enhance our nation's energy security and reduce our reliance on foreign sources of oil."The Enzymatic Hydrolysis of Biomass Cellulose to Sugars technology is expected to allow a wide range of biomass resources to be used to produce energy and chemicals. It is an important step toward realizing the potential of bio-refineries-in which plant and waste materials are used to produce an array of fuels and chemicals, analogous to an oil refinery today.Through this technology, the cost of converting cellulosic biomass into usable sugars can be reduced by more than 20 times per gallon of ethanol produced.The award is shared by NREL, Genencor International and Novozymes Biotech, Inc. NREL researchers who worked on this project included Michael Himmel, Jim McMillan, Dan Schell, Jody Farmer, Nancy Dowe and Rafael Nieves.Also recognized for 2004 are light and flexible thin-film copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) photovoltaic modules, which can be manufactured in various sizes and have a compact, foldable design that allows for easy deployment, transport and storage.As a result, the modules have twice the power-to-weight ratio, and three times the power-to-size ratio as competing products. Because of this, they are especially suited for military applications, portable power for consumer and public use, boating and other marine applications and building-related uses, such as for bus shelters and in PV-integrated roofing.The award is shared by NREL, Global Solar Energy and ITN Energy Systems. NREL researchers who worked on this project included Harin Ullal, Ken Zweibel and Bolko von Roedern.NREL is the U.S. Department of Energy's premier laboratory for renewable energy research and development and a leading laboratory for energy efficiency R&D. NREL is operated for DOE by Midwest Research Institute and Battelle. For further information contact NREL Public Affairs at (303) 275-4090.NR-3404
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Comment #22 posted by ekim on September 26, 2011 at 22:00:08 PT
Hope 60minutes nypd has fast ck of cameras 
 see if its a s&f -if all who are charged and the cameras show no cannabis in view go to trial --then maybe we can start to breath againFrom the article, “More than 85 percent of those arrested for marijuana in New York City are blacks and Latinos in the poorest neighborhoods where the highest rates of stop-and-frisk occur. National studies show young whites smoke pot more than blacks and Latinos of the same age.”The injustice of that is just breath taking to me. It should be to everyone.
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Comment #21 posted by Hope on September 26, 2011 at 10:22:10 PT
a… victory
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Comment #20 posted by Hope on September 24, 2011 at 20:46:59 PT
Obama's speech
Obama tells blacks to 'stop complainin' and fight
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Comment #19 posted by Hope on September 23, 2011 at 15:53:13 PT
One guy
commenting over at The Hill said, "Cute idea".
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Comment #18 posted by The GCW on September 23, 2011 at 15:19:57 PT
When the government can screw cannabis users for so long, even with as much activism as We push...When the government can dish out the patriot act...When about half Americans support Republicans who think -like they do...etc. etc. etc....Then government has notice that it can get away with anyting; including bombing the world trade center towers.
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Comment #17 posted by Hope on September 23, 2011 at 14:52:13 PT
Legalize and Regulate Marijuana in a Manner Similar to Alcohol.
We the people want to know when we can have our "perfectly legitimate" discussion on marijuana legalization. Marijuana prohibition has resulted in the arrest of over 20 million Americans since 1965, countless lives ruined and hundreds of billions of tax dollars squandered and yet this policy has still failed to achieve its stated goals of lowering use rates, limiting the drug's access, and creating safer communities.Isn't it time to legalize and regulate marijuana in a manner similar to alcohol? If not, please explain why you feel that the continued criminalization of cannabis will achieve the results in the future that it has never achieved in the past?!/petition/legalize-and-regulate-marijuana-manner-similar-alcohol/y8l45gb1
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Comment #16 posted by Hope on September 23, 2011 at 14:27:27 PT
Lombar! So good to hear from you. I hope you're well.I wondered about some of that voting, too. Reformers can put in a word on more than one issue. I hope they do. But then again... there is some advantage to our issue being so noticeably out front for awhile ("What does that say about our online community?"), when the other important issues certainly ought to catch up soon. Or maybe reformers are the only people that pay much attention to these government sites. It's possible, I guess.There are no petitions, that I recall seeing, for a word with the President/White House about about insurance, medical care, or funding for research to renew infrastructure or to fight poverty and disease.Lots of stuff to come, I'm sure.
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Comment #15 posted by museman on September 23, 2011 at 13:53:54 PT
agreed.When the government listens to the people, and actually acts in their (the people) interest, we will have made it to ground zero of a government "Of the People. and By the People." But, as you so aptly put it, the fear of the politician is more about being exposed by the truth, than the welfare of their constituents, because if the truth is exposed the public learns what a crock they've been feeding us for a long time.Anyone still convinced of any real benevolence existing anywhere - except in political hyperbole, and clever speech writing- in american politics is either uninformed, duped, or a member of the club.This government has proven over and over, in every 'administration' to put the interests of the corporate, economic rulers first. These petitions are a joke. IMOAnd the fact that you have to reveal your personal identity to the government, is not a real selling point to many who actually value and practice freedom and liberty.The 'Patriot Act' is a historical notice of the apathetic ignorance of the american consumer values and practices. There is little difference between the way the american laborer has bowed to this travesty, and the way the common German citizen turned their back on rise of the SS in Nazi Germany.Mainstream Americans value their SUVs, and widescreens way more than health, more than common sense, and more than the future generations. Or at least that is the common media presentation and hype. And I sure see it on the roads. Over $4 a gallon and there has been very little change in the wasteful driving habits of america.A lot of money was given to the banks and the insurance companies, - to ostensibly 'save' our economy, but yet the blatant support of THOSE WHO DO NOT NEED IT over those who obviously do, should be a slap in the face of any american who ever felt there was honor in our government.The attack on retired and disabled people is not even being discussed. The cost of living has risen close to 300% in some places, yet the minimum wage hasn't changed in almost 10 years. Social security incomes were not adjusted for cost of living increase, and neither were VA pensions. Yet the limos keep rollin' the Lear Jets still flyin, the wealthy are like at a global yard sale, and just as happy as pigs in shit, and our government creates law to further eliminate access to alternatives, and liberty -that's what they do, that's their job.They are neither 'public servants' nor 'representative' of the interests of the people, regardless of how clever their speeches may be. The sooner enough americans realize this and kick the posers out, the sooner we can get on with fixing this huge mess that their greed, waste, uncouth, destruction, and war as an economic base has created in the world. Or we could vote on the choices they give us every 2 and 4 years, like we've been doing (with not much success I might add). But you can't change thousands of years of programmed ignorance over night, it's a labor intense proposition.I'm afraid that a high percentage of americans are already dumbed down, and not likely to notice anything outside their immediate sense gratification, until they can't gratify it so easily.Fortunately for them, when the cities crumble and a few manage to survive and make it out, there are a lot more folks outside the city who are conscious enough to see the writing on the wall of crumbling Babylon, and will be able to teach the survivors about the reality they ignored for so long.But american politics is a dead horse, and it really is beginning to stink.LEGALIZE FREEDOM
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Comment #14 posted by lombar on September 23, 2011 at 12:09:30 PT
Re:whitehouse petitions
Hi all!I'm kinda wondering why the Norml petition has 17000+ signatures but the one to repeal the patriot act has only 800ish? (I'm going to guess that the cannabis activist network is much more populated, much faster to react to online stuff) I'm not a US citizen but even a deranged parrot could see that The Patriot Act is a total end-run around your bill of rights. Perhaps, once the cannabis users can really come out of the shadows, they will turn their attention to other issues. Perhaps this is what the Government(s) fear the most.Once again however, Obama is faced with ignoring the masses concerning the cannabis issue. How will they handle it this time?
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Comment #13 posted by museman on September 23, 2011 at 10:56:13 PT
# _9
"How many times did you drive throgh a city and feel like you were in a movie?"More like a nightmare.The anxiety I have felt in driving through nearly every single US city from coast to coast (and I've been through my fair share of 'em) is an identifiable contrast to the relief I feel when I've made it past them.The best decision I ever made was to decide it was better to sleep in a tent or under the stars, than live anywhere in any city. My family and I struggled greatly -still struggling- but my kids all got a good look at reality -which is in short supply in the concrete, steel, and glass canyons of metropolis.The cities are the cesspools of human corruption. They are dirty, the air is contaminated - and so is the water. They breed contemptuous people, who jostle each other on the street every day, but take an eye-to-eye contact as a potential threat. They can live next to their neighbor for a lifetime and never get to know them.To live in the city you must abdicate so much of your humanity, and your nature, it's easy to see why the rulers prefer to keep the populations inside of them -there it is so easy to justify being an automaton servicing the unseen masters who control everything.To live in the city one must be in great denial, and therefore in constant inner conflict -needing special reprogramming professions like 'psychiatry' and 'psychology' to convince the real persons inside to stop trying to get out.The city is Rome, Babylon, and every other ruin. Where the cities sit, the earth is dead. The waters are dead. The small bits natural of life that remain are mostly vermin feeding off the wasteful filthiness of a plastic wrapped consumer delusion.The cities are cancer on the skin of the planet -and not unrelated- the disease called cancer, was once referred to as 'industrial disease' which is directly linked to the pollution originating and perpetuating in the city.I am called a 'doomsayer' for this next bit, but the cities are doomed. They cannot continue as they are, and humanity still survive with any quality of life left. This planet can sustain a lot more than the statistical lies of the ruling propaganda, and in a truly natural human system of sharing all that the Creator has given, instead of allowing a few handfuls of corrupt humans to run the show, the space available is f'in huge. Of course if you just took all the city people and suddenly made them have to live like organic beings instead of the fakeness they seem to believe in, they would fail, because they live in ignorance of reality, and reality would be hostile to them.This 'civilization' is existing on borrowed time. We have a state of Grace that seems to elude most who feel that their jobs and bank account are priority in their lives, but that Grace will not last forever. If people want to survive what is coming soon to their neighborhood, they better get a crash course in natural systems, and start practicing, or they will be left to the mob action that will explode in every city when the grid goes, and the trucks stop, and the ships stop. A hungry mob is very similar to the hollywood rendition of Zombies- which maybe explains why FEMA issued a 'Zombie preparedness plan.'LEGALIZE FREEDOM
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Comment #12 posted by Hope on September 23, 2011 at 10:38:32 PT
Also... This from The Hill
Petition to legalize pot is first to hit White House threshold; ET proposal close
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Comment #11 posted by Hope on September 23, 2011 at 10:13:49 PT
By the way. Here we go again.
Elections next year. Whitehouse has up a new site to ask what we, the people, want to be done. Right.
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Comment #10 posted by Hope on September 23, 2011 at 10:11:22 PT
Lol! Never! Missed that trip completely!
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Comment #9 posted by rchandar on September 23, 2011 at 09:33:30 PT:
Like film. How many times did you drive throgh a city and feel like you were in a movie?
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Comment #8 posted by The GCW on September 22, 2011 at 20:37:40 PT
Medical marijuana intern wanted
Medical marijuana intern wanted
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Comment #7 posted by Hope on September 22, 2011 at 15:19:59 PT
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Comment #6 posted by rchandar on September 22, 2011 at 14:16:12 PT:
And graffiti is like art, it livens up those boring urban re-reels.
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Comment #5 posted by Hope on September 22, 2011 at 13:12:23 PT
I'd say the city attorney's office
is "highly suspect and unreliable" about all this.Boooo.
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Comment #4 posted by Storm Crow on September 22, 2011 at 10:10:50 PT
Seems to be a little discrepancy...
Between what the sheriffs say and the Los Angeles Police Department's Chief Charlie Beck says about crime an dispensaries! LAPD chief: Pot clinics not plagued by crime"Banks are more likely to get robbed than medical marijuana dispensaries,".....But a report that Beck recently had the department generate looking at citywide robberies in 2009 found that simply wasn't the case."I have tried to verify that because that, of course, is the mantra," said Beck. "It doesn't really bear out."In 2009, the LAPD received reports of 71 robberies at the more than 350 banks in the city, compared to 47 robberies at medical marijuana facilities which number at least 800."A little simple division gives us a 20% chance of robbery for banks. (71 divided by 350 = .202). While a dispensary has about a 6% chance of being robbed! (47 divided by 800 = .058) It is WAY safer to visit to a dispensary than a bank in terms of walking in on a robbery! Perhaps the police should look into shutting down all those crime-producing banks! Surely it makes more sense to eliminate the real crime magnets in a neighborhood! 
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Comment #3 posted by Vincent on September 22, 2011 at 05:55:33 PT:
What cops (choose to) believe
"But Steve Whitmore, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, strenuously disagreed with the report's conclusions. 'Every time we shut down a dispensary, the crime and the disorder decrease,' he said".As usual, cops and Conservatives (one and the same!) try to disregard scientific conclusions. That's why we call them, uh, "PIGS". That word describes their function. 
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Comment #2 posted by Hope on September 21, 2011 at 17:03:01 PT
And this...
Police may have clues about 35 bodies found in Mexican roadway a university peace conference in Mexico City on Wednesday, an activist leader said the bodies found in Veracruz are a reminder that Mexicans must not become desensitized to violence, even if authorities say the victims had criminal histories.
"The value of a human life does not decrease because it has a criminal background or not," said Edgardo Buscaglia, president of the Institute of Citizen Action for Justice and Democracy. "They were left like trash in the street."
The dead included 12 women and 23 men.
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Comment #1 posted by greenmed on September 21, 2011 at 16:02:13 PT
OT: fyi
The History Channel is premiering a documentary "The Stoned Ages" tonight 9:00-11:00 ET with a rebroadcast at 1:00 AM ET.
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