Denver Cops "Ain't Hatin'," But They Issue 160 Citations at 4/20 Events Anyway

Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

As you know, today is April 20 — and the Colorado 420 Coalition insists that a political rally will take place at 4:20 p.m. More details below.

In the meantime, the annual 4/20 Rally took place at Civic Center Park on Saturday and Sunday, April 18 and 19, with headliners including Rick Ross, seen onstage above in a pic from his Twitter account. We've embedded several more below.

As for the Denver Police Department, it tweeted a number of messages about not hatin' and preferring not to be buzzkills. Yet the department issued approximately 160 citations anyhow — even more than last year, when 130 citations were written.

As for arrests, 22 people were jailed for 4/20-related matters in 2014. But we've seen no DPD confirmation of anyone put behind bars this time around.

Plenty of folks lit up at Civic Center, as is clear from our 4/20 smokeout slideshow

They did so despite warnings from organizers that smoking in public remains against the law.

The Denver Police Department sent that message numerous times via Twitter.

Here's an example from the afternoon of April 18:

Hours later, this information was reinforced by an identical graphic, supplemented by confirmation that around sixty people had received citations on the 18th, mostly for public consumption:

The next day, the DPD made several unintentionally hilarious Twitter attempts to seem hip while at the same time stressing that the public-consumption laws wouldn't be ignored. Here's one example....

...and another:

We're guessing the DPD's definition of hatin' may be somewhat different from the one embraced by many of the 100 or so people cited on April 19.

That adds up to around 160 citations over the weekend — although there were many thousands more who checked out Ross, as is clear from his twitpics. Here's one....

....and another....

...and one more:

As such, the citations seem to be examples of selective punishment that is unlikely to dissuade civil disobedience this afternoon.

The Colorado 420 Coalition about today's gathering reads:

Marijuana Legalization in Colorado
"Really Legalize It!"

Colorado 4/20 1st Amendment Protest
Monday, April 20, 2015
at 4:20pm

Across from the State Capitol Building, 200 E. Colfax, Denver, Colorado

If you attend only one activist event/protest each year, this is it!

We need you to show up on 4/20 at 4:20pm in Denver!

Smoking in public is still illegal — People still go to jail for cannabis crimes.

The civil disobedience will continue!

Here's a video about the weekend's events from WeAreChange.org.

Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.