Wilmington Police Chief Robert Tracy revealed he's against the legalization of marijuana in Delaware on WDEL.

Speaking on Del-AWARE, Tracy said he sides with AAA Mid-Atlantic and the Medical Society of Delaware which have made public statements against legalizing pot. He said states that have legalized marijuana lead to younger generations embracing it.

"It's like cigarettes...they're starting to see [an increase] of juveniles using marijuana where it's been legalized for recreational use or medicinal purposes."  

He said drug use--even marijuana--can affect juveniles, developmentally.

"I'm concerned about that because we have enough issues with juveniles dealing with trauma. I don't want to add to that."

He said contrary to popular belief, marijuana legalization doesn't get rid of the black market. He points to excess pot growing in states like Colorado and Washington, where marijuana has been legalized.  

"They have six years' worth of supplies...how are they going to unload that? Cigarettes are legal, but once they raise the prices and taxes on it, look at the un-taxed cigarettes," he said.

He added legalization has unintended consequences.

"It actually creates more violence because there's no penalty behind it, so the competition's more stiff, and the profit's there, so then you have a lot of dealers who are in conflict with each other who will protect their territory or their trade. I found last year or the year before, I'm finding violence that's over marijuana and not the other drugs," he said.  

Tracy said while no one is being sent to prison for marijuana, since it's been decriminalized, it's still illegal in the state of Delaware and on the federal level.

"Until such time that they change the law, I took a sworn oath, my officers are, to actually follow through and enforce those laws. I might not agree with every law, but I'm bound by an oath that I will enforce the law."  

When asked what laws Tracy may have private reservations about, he mentioned archaic laws, in some states, related to sodomy and rape, as well as the outlawing of same-sex marriage.

"What you do in your life, and what you do privately, that's none of my business, and I accept all, because I'm here to represent all people. As long as you're not breaking the law, I'm in a good place with what anybody wants to do."  

Assistant News Director

Amy Cherry is the Assistant News Director and an investigative journalist at WDEL. She joined WDEL's award-winning news team in 2010 from WBZ Newsradio 1030 in Boston and has received national accolades for reporting.