Although recreational marijuana is legal in the state of Colorado, there still exists a lot of confusion about its legal status. Voters in Colorado made the recreational use of pot legal in November 2012, but there are still specific limitations on its use. The first facilities to sell recreational marijuana were opened in January 2014.
If individuals follow the state regulations regarding recreational marijuana use, they cannot be arrested for marijuana-related crimes. However, individuals could be convicted or issued a ticket if they violate the regulations. For example, marijuana is still being sold illegally on the black market in Colorado, and black market marijuana sales are still illegal.
In addition, recreational marijuana users must be adults over the age of 21 in order to consume marijuana. There are also limitations on the places that it can be smoked, and the amount that can be held for consumption purposes. Violations of any of these regulations could result in an arrest and serious punishment upon conviction.
Furthermore, it is vital that Colorado residents remember that marijuana is still illegal in most other states. It is also illegal under federal law. As such, Colorado residents who venture across state lines while in possession of marijuana could be arrested. Similarly, those in possession of marijuana in a federal park or on federal land could also be arrested for possession crimes.
If you or your loved one uses marijuana in Colorado, it is important to learn as much as possible about marijuana laws and regulations. Indeed, the ability to use recreational marijuana is a freedom that is not afforded to most residents of the United States. However, it is vital that the substance is used responsibly and in accordance with the law in order to prevent arrest or injury.
Source: Findlaw, “Marijuana legalization and decriminalization,” accessed April. 08, 2015