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Chapter 5-10: Marijuana Offenses1

5-10-1.  Definitions. Go to the top

For purposes of this chapter, the following words shall have the following definitions:

"Marijuana" means all parts of the plant "cannabis sativa L"., whether growing or not, the seeds thereof, the resin extracted from any part of the plant, and every compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of the plant, its seeds, or its resin. It does not include fiber produced from the stalks, oil, or cake made from the seeds of the plant, or sterilized seed of the plant which is incapable of germination, if these items exist apart from any other item defined as "marijuana" in this subsection. "Marijuana" shall include any product containing marijuana.

"Registry identification card" shall have the same meaning as is set forth in Article XVIII, Section 14(1)(b) of the Colorado Constitution, or as may be more fully defined in any applicable state law or regulation.

"Underage person" means any person under twenty-one years of age.

Ordinance No. 7892 (2013)

5-10-2.  Consumption of Marijuana in Public Prohibited. Go to the top

(a)  No person shall consume any marijuana in public.

(b)  For purposes of this section, "in public" means:

(1)  In or upon any public way or public right of way, whether in a vehicle or not;

(2)  On any property or in any building that is owned, leased, used by, or open to the public; or

(3)  In or upon those portions of any private property upon which the public has an express or implied license to enter or remain.

(c)  No person shall drive or sit in the driver's seat of any motor vehicle, other than one licensed to carry passengers for hire, in which a violation of Subsection (a) of this section is occurring.

Ordinance Nos. 7892 (2013); 7965 (2014)

5-10-3.  Unlawful to Sell or Give to or Procure for Minors. Go to the top

No person shall sell, serve, deliver, or give away any marijuana or any product containing marijuana to any underage person or purchase marijuana or marijuana-infused product for an underage person.

Ordinance No. 7892 (2013)

5-10-4.  Possession and Sale by Minors Unlawful. Go to the top

(a)  No underage person shall consume, possess, or have under such person's control or request that any other person purchase for such underage person or sell, serve, give away, or offer for sale any marijuana or any product containing marijuana.

(b)  Prima facie evidence that a violation of this chapter occurred within the city shall consist of:

(1)  Evidence that the defendant was under the age of twenty-one years and possessed or consumed marijuana within the city;

(2)  Evidence that the defendant was under the age of twenty-one years and manifested any of the characteristics commonly associated with marijuana use or impairment while present anywhere within the city; or

(3)  Indicia including bloodshot eyes, watery eyes, eyelid tremors, green particulate on tongue, dilated pupils, dry mouth, or any other indicator of marijuana consumption.

(c)  An underage person and one or two other persons shall be immune from criminal prosecution under this section if they establish the following:

(1)  One of the underage persons called 911 and reported that another underage person was in need of medical assistance due to marijuana consumption;

(2)  The underage person who called 911 and, if applicable, one or two other persons acting in concert with the underage person who called 911 provided each of their names to the 911 operator;

(3)  The underage person was the first person to make the 911 report; and

(4)  The underage person and, if applicable, one or two other persons acting in concert with the underage person who made the 911 call remained on the scene with the underage person in need of medical assistance until assistance arrived and cooperated with medical assistance and law enforcement personnel on the scene.

(d)  Upon the expiration of one year from the date of a conviction of a charge under this section, the defendant may petition the municipal court for an order sealing the record of such municipal court charge. The court shall grant such petition if the petitioner has not been arrested for, charged with or convicted of any felony, misdemeanor, petty offense, or criminal city ordinance violation during the period of one year following the date of such petitioner's conviction of charges under this section. Upon acquittal, dismissal, or a decision not to file a charge under this section, the defendant may petition the municipal court for an order sealing the record of such municipal court charge and the court shall grant such petition.

(e)  In any judicial proceeding in any court of this state concerning a charge under this section, the court shall take judicial notice of methods of testing a person's blood, breath, saliva, or urine for the presence of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and of the design and operation of devices certified by the department of public health and environment for testing a person's blood, breath, saliva, or urine for the presence of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). This subsection shall not prevent the necessity of establishing during a trial that the testing devices were working properly and that such testing devices were properly operated. Nothing in this subsection shall preclude a defendant from offering evidence concerning the accuracy of testing devices.

(f)  It shall be an affirmative defense to a charged violation of this section that the underage person (1) on the date of the alleged offense lawfully possessed a current registry identification card issued by the state of Colorado to the underage person, and (2) possessed no more marijuana than the amount permitted by Article XVIII, Section 14 of the Colorado Constitution. Before evidence of this affirmative defense is presented to a jury, the underage person shall first provide written notice of this defense to the court and prosecution and a photocopy of the underage person's registry identification card, at least ten days prior to trial. An underage person who raises this defense waives doctor-patient privilege and confidentiality concerning the underage person's patient registry information.

Ordinance Nos. 7892 (2013); 7965 (2014)

5-10-5.  Evidence of Marijuana in Trials. Go to the top

(a)  In any trial for a violation of this chapter, any witness with prior personal experience of the appearance, taste, or smell of marijuana may state an opinion that a substance was marijuana, based on his or her observations and experience. The witness need not be offered as an expert witness.

(b)  In any trial for a violation of this chapter, any witness may testify that a person manifested characteristics commonly associated with marijuana use if the witness has personal experience or training that would enable the witness to recognize the characteristics. The witness need not be offered as an expert witness.

(c)  In any trial for a violation of this section, any container or wrapper with labeling indicating the contents of the container or wrapper shall be admissible into evidence, and the information on any label on such container or wrapper shall be admissible into evidence and shall not constitute hearsay. A jury or a judge, whichever is appropriate, may consider the information upon such label in determining whether the contents of the container or wrapper were composed in whole or in part of marijuana. A label identifying the contents of the container as "marijuana," "MJ," "weed," "bud," "sativa," "indica," or "kush" shall constitute prima facie evidence that the contents of the container were composed in whole or in part of marijuana.

(d)  In any trial for a violation of this section, testimony of a competent witness, including the arresting officer, that the substance possessed exhibited the smell, appearance, or other characteristics of marijuana shall be sufficient to establish that the substance in question was marijuana. The defendant may rebut such testimony with a laboratory test, performed at the defendant's expense demonstrating that the substance was not marijuana.

Ordinance No. 7892 (2013)

5-10-6.  Marijuana Odor Emissions. Go to the top

(a)  No person, tenant, occupant, or property owner shall permit the emission of marijuana odor from any source to result in detectable odors that leave the premises upon which they originated and interfere with the reasonable and comfortable use and enjoyment of another's property.

(b)  Whether or not a marijuana odor emission interferes with the reasonable and comfortable use and enjoyment of a property shall be measured against the objective standards of a reasonable person of normal sensitivity.

(c)  A marijuana odor emission shall be deemed to interfere with the reasonable and comfortable use and enjoyment of property if the city manager receives three or more complaints concerning marijuana odor emanating from the same source from individuals representing separate households, rooming units, or places of business within the city.

(d)  No person shall be convicted of a violation of this section unless the city manager has delivered or posted a written warning, in the previous twelve months, that conduct violating this section is occurring or has occurred.

(1)  The person, tenant, occupant, or property owner must abate the marijuana odor emission within seven days after the warning is delivered or posted.

(2)  Seven or more days after a warning is posted or delivered, a separate violation of this section occurs on each day that the marijuana odor emission repeats or continues.

(3)  The warning shall cite this section.

(4)  The warning may be delivered personally or posted on the property.

(5)  It shall be presumed that a person charged under this section received the warning if the warning was either (i) delivered to the property owner, a tenant, or an occupant; or (ii) posted on the property.

(e)  Extended grace period for licensed marijuana cultivation facilities. No person who receives a warning at a licensed marijuana cultivation facility shall be convicted of a violation that allegedly occurred within ninety days after the first warning issued pursuant to Subsection (d), if all of the following conditions are met:

(1)  A first warning within twelve months was previously issued pursuant to Subsection (d) of this section for the person's property, and the subject property is licensed as a marijuana cultivation facility by the city or the state;

(2)  Seven or fewer days after the warning was posted or delivered, the person submitted a written document to the city manager which explained (i) why the marijuana odor emissions could not be abated within seven days feasibly and (ii) how the person planned to abate the marijuana odor emission in the following ninety days;

(3)  The person receiving the warning has diligently pursued to completion the plans for abating the marijuana odor emission; and

(4)  The written document described in Paragraph (2) was submitted fewer than ninety days before the date of the violation.

Ordinance No. 7931 (2013)


1 Adopted by Ordinance No. 7892, effective June 6, 2013.