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Officials worry legal marijuana sales in Colorado could mean more pot in Oklahoma

by Silas Allen Modified: January 1, 2014 at 7:00 pm •  Published: January 1, 2014

Anyone looking to drive an ounce or two of marijuana from Colorado to Texas doesn't have to worry about Oklahoma law enforcement for very long.

From its northern border with Colorado, where marijuana is now legal for recreational use, to the southern border it shares with the Texas Panhandle, Cimarron County is only about 35 miles across.

It wouldn't take a driver with a small stash of pot too long to pass through the sparsely populated county, said Cimarron County Sheriff Bob White. Usually, those drivers aren't planning to stay in the county, he said.

“There's nothing here to attract anybody to stop,” White said.

About 53 percent of Colorado voters in November 2012 voted to repeal the state's ban on recreational marijuana. That change goes into effect Wednesday.

Cimarron County, at the western tip of the Oklahoma Panhandle, is the only part of Oklahoma that shares a border with Colorado. Although the so-called Green Wednesday marks the beginning of legal pot for anyone older than 21 in Colorado, White said his county has seen a fairly steady flow of marijuana coming across the county's northern border for several years.

Colorado began allowing dispensaries to distribute medical marijuana in 2010. Since then, officers occasionally stop a driver with marijuana — usually because the driver is speeding, he said.

“There hasn't been a great amount of them,” White said.

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by Silas Allen
General Assignment/Breaking News Reporter
Silas Allen is a news reporter for The Oklahoman. He is a Missouri native and a 2008 graduate of the University of Missouri.
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