The Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs has released a study that examined the correlation between the presence of a medical marijuana collective and the amount of crime that occurs in the surrounding neighborhood.
Researchers examined 95 communities in Sacramento, California in 2009, and found that none of the neighborhoods with dispensaries have similar crime rates to neighborhoods without collectives.
This study could change the way that the medical marijuana industry is viewed in California and throughout the country. One of the biggest concerns of lawmakers and neighbors to collectives is that they will draw an “unseemly” crowd that is conducive to thefts, violence, or drug dealing. However, this study has demonstrated that that is not the case.
Researchers have acknowledged that further information must be gathered, as only one period of time in a single city was examined.
Study leader Nancy Kepple of the University of California, Los Angeles said in a press release that, “This study is a good first step. But it was not designed to address the bigger picture of how these dispensaries might be affecting neighborhoods.”