After 6 months, legal pot in Colorado a mix of highs, lows; related crime down, impaired driving up

DENVER - Nearly six months after Colorado became the first in the world to sell legal recreational marijuana, industry advocates are playing up the high points -- specifically an economic boom and crime in Denver actually declining.

"I think a lot of people are looking at Colorado, and when you see crime going down, that’s a huge sign of success," said Michael Elliot, executive director of the Marijuana Industry Group. "I think so many things people were scared about have been shown to be nonsense."

The first four months of recreational pot sales has brought in nearly $11 million in tax revenue, demand for real estate has gone up, and the marijuana industry estimates there are currently 10,000 people working in the business.

On Thursday, the state announced that during 20 undercover operations to test if pot shops would sell to minors, not a single store sold to a child.

"The Division prides itself on ensuring public safety; we are pleased with the results and will continue to monitor the businesses to ensure that the compliance efforts are maintained," said Lewis Koski, Director of the Marijuana Enforcement Division.

But while the state hasn't gone up in smoke, not everyone agrees Colorado is better off and safer.

The state's largest provider of community detox centers, Arapahoe House, reported this week that DUI admissions involving marijuana have nearly doubled since legalization.

In 2013, 8 percent of admissions were accused of driving under the influence of marijuana, and now that's up to 15 percent.

"We're only seeing recreational legalization in it's infancy, but it's already having an impact on public safety," said Araphoe House spokeswoman Kate Osmundson.

7NEWS found small children continue to get their hands on marijuana, particularly edibles.

The Rocky Mountain Poison Control Center said, so far this year it's had 19 calls from people reporting pot ingestion by children younger than 5 years old.

Children's Hospital Colorado said it's treated 11 kids who've ingested edibles marijuana, six of whom have become critically ill.

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