Unsurprisingly, a black market for marijuana still exists in Colorado despite recreational marijuana being legal. Should anyone really be surprised?
The Associated Press references the January shooting death of 25-year-old Nathaniel Tallman—who was killed trying to sell weed the "old-fashioned, illegal way"—to highlight concern in Colorado over the matter:
While no one expected the state's first-in-the-nation recreational sales would eliminate the need for dangerous underground sales overnight, the violence has raised concerns among police, prosecutors and pot advocates that a black market for marijuana is alive and well in Colorado.
What did they expect? According to marijuana advocates, a complete and immediate overhaul of the way things were previously done was not to be expected:
Pot advocates say the state is in a transition period, and while pot-related crimes will continue, they will begin to decline as more stores open and prices of legal marijuana decline.
"It's just a transition period," activist Brian Vicente said. "Marijuana was illegal for the last 80 years in our state, and there are some remnants of that still around. Certainly, much like alcohol, over time these underground dealers will fade away."
Yes, there are over 160 state-licensed locations where legal weed is available, but people will still buy and sell weed illegally in the interim (and afterwards). Everyone knew this was going to continue, just like they know water is wet.
[via Associated Press]