Exploring the Ecological Association Between Crime and Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

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Exploring the Ecological Association between Medical Marijuana Dispensaries and Crime Name: Institution: Exploring the Ecological Association between Medical Marijuana Dispensaries and Crime Introduction Medical marijuana dispensaries are officially authorized outlets that dispense marijuana prescriptions to bona fide patients. Marijuana is of immense medicinal value when used by the patient in strict adherence to prescription. It is a common misperception that medical marijuana dispensaries increase crime rates in their neighborhoods. This erroneous perception is informed by the stereotype that associates marijuana with criminal activities (Kepple & Freisthler, 2012). In this regard, the legalization of marijuana dispensaries has brought about concerns that the outlets and customers would become targets for crime. Research and statistics from various institutions strongly suggest there is no direct relationship between marijuana dispensaries and crime. The routine activity theory suggests that crime is most likely to occur in a place with a potential target, a willing and motivated offender, and the absence of an effective guardianship (Kepple & Freisthler, 2012). The medical marijuana dispensaries can satisfy these conditions, although research is yet to be done to ascertain whether this assumption is accurate. Research Questions/Hypothesis The research hypothesizes there is a relationship between crime rates and the spatial clustering of medical marijuana clinics. Key Variables The independent variable was the spatial concentration of marijuana clinic while the dependent variables were property crime and violent crime. Population The

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