Denver police give out warnings to smokers on 16th Street Mall to enforce ban

DENVER-- Starting Friday, smokers visiting the 16th Street Mall have to hold off on lighting up.

The city's smoking ban is in effect, banning all cigarettes, marijuana and vaping devices within 50 feet of the mall.

Denver Police Department officers were giving verbal warnings to people still smoking on Friday afternoon.

Many people claimed they didn't know about the Breathe Easy ordinance, designed to keep the mall clean.

"Officers are working on going around to each business letting them know to tell their employees or guests that they're not allowed to smoke in the mall because the ban starts today," officer Rodney Sanchez said.

Offenders could face up to a $100 fine, but police want that to be the last resort. They will aim to give warnings first or ask smokers to back up 50 feet.

"As a smoker, I totally understand, it smells and I can understand how it's irritating so I can walk a block off," Paige Mathis said.

Police will put up signs that warn smokers of the ban on Monday.