Study: Legalizing Medical Marijuana May Lower Violent Crime

Close up of a marijuana flower showing the trichomes, which are rich in THC.


by Amber Lyon

on April 29, 2014

A study shows legalizing medical marijuana does not increase crime and may actually lower some types of violent crime.  The study examined FBI Uniform Crime Report statistics on murder, rape, assault, robbery, burglary, larceny and auto theft from all 50 states, including 11 states that legalized medical marijuana over a 17 year period from 1990-2006.

The conclusion:

 Results did not indicate a crime exacerbating effect of MML (medical marijuana) on any of the Part I offenses. Alternatively, state MML may be correlated with a reduction in homicide and assault rates, net of other covariates.

These findings run counter to arguments suggesting the legalization of marijuana for medical purposes poses a danger to public health in terms of exposure to violent crime and property crimes.


Click here to read the full study:  The Effect of Medical Marijuana Laws on Crime: Evidence from State Panel Data, 1990-2006