Four students become ill after sharing pot cookies

Four Grace Patterson Elementary School students became ill after they shared two cookies containing marijuana.

March 1, 2011 11:26:30 PM PST
Four students at Grace Patterson Elementary School in Vallejo became ill Monday after eating two marijuana-laced cookies that police say an 11-year-old boy received from a convenience store clerk.

Vallejo police want to track down the culprit who gave away marijuana-laced cookies that wound up in the hands of a fifth grade boy. Police are calling this a convoluted story. They know a convenience store clerk gave the boy the cookies, but they don't know who gave that person the cookies. School officials reached out to parents and hope to turn this into a valuable lesson for students about not taking food unless you know for sure where it came from.

Authorities said the fifth graders did not know they were eating marijuana-laced cookies, since in the wrapper says 'medical cannabis' in small red letters.

"They are not clear that they are cannabis cookies. Unless you're reading the fine print you wouldn't know," Sgt. Jeff Bassett from the Vallejo Police Department said.

It's not just the kids who didn't know. Investigators say the clerk at the convenience store also had no idea the cookies he handed to the 11-year-old boy contained marijuana. The boy lives across the street and calls the clerk, who regularly gives him treats, a friend.

Another Calco clerk, Jose Chavez, says he can't understand how this happened.

"We do not sell marijuana here. We don't sell marijuana here, none of that," he said.

Police say the cookies came from a regular customer who gave them to the clerk on Monday morning. The boy took the cookies to school and shared them with at least five classmates during lunch and about 30 minutes later, four boys walked into the school office feeling nauseous. A yard supervisor found the packaging and the school called paramedics.

"The teaching that will come out of this is about wise decision making skills. If someone gives you something, even if you might know the person, that maybe you check it out before you eat it or give it to someone else," school district spokesperson Tish Busselle said.

It's a lesson about decision making skills that for someone involved may turn into something even bigger.

"We haven't got to the criminal charges part of it yet. We are basically still conducting an investigation to determine exactly how they came in contact with the cookies, and if there's any nefarious type stuff happening," Bassett said.

Police have yet to identify that regular customer who gave the clerk the cookies. Some of the children were taken to local hospitals after they became ill. They were treated and released and according to the school district, they are doing just fine.

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