DENVER (CBS4/AP)– More letters will be mailed to medical marijuana dispensaries located near schools.

On Thursday, U.S. Attorney John Walsh said 23 dispensaries within 1,000 feet of schools have until Feb. 27 to shut down or face federal penalties, which can include asset seizure or forfeiture of property. The warning letters dated Thursday were being sent to dispensary owners and their landlords.

He said the letters were a first step and prosecutors were looking for medical marijuana businesses to target near schools. Walsh’s office declined to release a list of targeted businesses, saying they do not make public individuals under investigation.

State regulations prohibit medical marijuana businesses within 1,000 feet of schools but grandfathered in those businesses already in existence before regulations were passed last year.

“We’re going to move locations. I am not exactly sure yet, but we will open a new location in Denver that is obviously not within 1,000 feet of a school,” said Bio Care manager Samantha Beckmann.

After the initial mailing to 23 medical marijuana dispensaries, more letters soon will be sent out.

“They can destroy these businesses with a two-page letter that took them 10 minutes to draft, but we won’t go that easily,” said Attorney Rob Corry.

Corry said there are far more than just 23 medical marijuana dispensaries located near schools.

“I still have worries but in fairness of the law, that moving them away from the school so that it’s not in sight of the school is going to be vital for the security of our children,” said Bromwell Elementary Principal Jody Cohn.

“I feel if you’re using state regulations right, I don’t think the federal government should come in and take that away from you,” said Beckmann.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (7)
  1. Common Sense Police says:

    Stop waging war on American citizens for making healthy life choices. Alcohol kills, cigarettes kill, pharmaceuticals kill. Marijuana does NOT kill, but its prohibition does. Citizens, our families, our children, our pets, our neighbors, our jobs, our futures, our country, these are what prohibition kills.

  2. rob welch says:

    hell bring it on over this way. i would love to have you folks right next door to me.can you see my smile,,:)

  3. rob welch says:

    i agree with mr common sense. we need to start with the lobbiest. get them out of politics!!! or at least make special laws that they have to follow.all that’s right. they all ready have laws,, they are called regulations. like common said,, Prohibition just kill’s nothing but more problems for good American Folks. Boy!! They are slowly chipping away at our bill of rights!!

  4. Justt Saay Noww says:

    Does this law apply to liquor stores or pharmacy’s too?

  5. Linda Rockhold says:

    This entire issue is being skewed on both sides.
    Children can’t buy medical marijuana, and I doubt if they are any more interested in it than the nearby pharmacy.
    If the principal interviewed doesn’t know how to explain to children what Mile High means, I suggest that she needs to go back to school. Denver’s elevation? If the issue is that children might be interested in “getting high”, when have they not? Kids talked about it in the ’60s.
    But that has nothing to do with medical marijuana, and although we had some hope that Colorado might become an enlightened state (from the standpoint of holistic medicine) and follow the numerous countries where marijuana is recognized as an important medication, it seems that those who are ignorant by choice are still out there waving their pitch forks and calling for the heads of the people who would be able to help them if they had serious diseases.

  6. Miss Cale says:

    It’s the state law and has been for over a year. Did you really think that being “grandfathered” in was going to stay legitimate? Hahaha. Who cares anyway? I’m licensed and smoke marijuana, and I’m all for dispensaries following the state laws. I’m sure driving an extra 200 feet to your dispensary’s new location is going to put a serious hole in your wallet.