The drug epidemic continues to roil over the nation, with seemingly innocuous foods getting involved. This time, the latest casualties in the ongoing war are teenagers in Indiana who reportedly consumed gummy bears containing narcotics.
Local officials investigating the case said this is a wake-up call for parents and teens alike to be more careful, Tech Times reports.
A teenager in LaPorte called 911 on the evening of July 6, Thursday, and was waiting for emergency responders by the side of the road. The 19-year-old admitted to feeling dizzy after ingesting an unknown substance, and asked to be taken to the emergency room.
The teen was experiencing pain in his leg, increased heart rate, blurry vision and hallucinations. He confessed to police officers that he had friends somewhere in the area who had likewise consumed the drug. Police then found ten more adolescents in a nearby residence, all of whom were suffering the same symptoms.
The emergency responders could not immediately identify what the teens had taken, but the patients said they had shared six gummy bears, biting into half a piece each.
Mike Kellems, Captain of the LaPorte County Sheriff’s Department, said,
You know I’ll tell you that in 31 years on the job I’ve never seen that many people affected by eating a gummy bear.
The teenagers were admitted to a local hospital, where lab results showed extremely high levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in their systems, along with elevated heart rates over 200. THC is an active ingredient commonly found in marijuana that makes it give a “high.”
Kellems said authorities were confident that the teens knew they were not eating regular gummy bears, as the candies were larger in size and already contained the drug. He added that the gummy bears likely contained another drug apart from THC.
The uneaten gummy bear has been sent to the lab for testing. As of now, it is unclear if any of the teenagers will be criminally charged.