Within 15 minutes after Hancock’s press conference, Denver residents flocked to liquor stores and adult-use cannabis retail shops in droves. They formed long, packed lines outside of smaller pot shops and liquor stores, and, as the Denver Post put it, were “violating social distancing requirements while they were at it.”
“It’s created a safety issue in the short term,” Josh Robinson, the owner of Argonaut Wine & Liquor, told the Denver Post. His store is one of downtown Denver’s largest — and busiest — liquor outlets. During the rush, his staff had to double as security to ensure that only one customer entered once a previous customer left.
“The mayor said not to panic buy, but that is exactly what he encouraged people to do by shutting us down,” he continued.
By Monday evening, Hancock reversed portions of Denver’s stay-at-home order, namely the part about closing liquor stores and pot shops. Now, so long as a liquor vendor or recreational weed business can keep its staff and customers six feet away from each other (e.g. with curbside services or deliveries), they can remain open during the stay-at-home order.