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Green Country parents concerned after THC edibles lead to hospitalizations

Posted at 10:19 PM, Mar 31, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-01 08:31:06-04

TULSA, Okla. — According to the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority, nearly 370,000 Oklahomans hold medical cannabis cards.

The alternative medicine is shown to help many patients, but it can be dangerous in the wrong hands.

"It's so easy now for our children to get a hold of things that they shouldn't be getting a hold of," said Kathy Prince of Bristow, Okla.

The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics is investigating two overdose hospitalizations from THC edibles. At first glance, the bags of chips look like any other brand at the grocery store.

"To a 7-year-old boy, they're going to look exactly like what they've been having a parent buy for them at a convenience store," Mark Woodward, spokesperson for OBN, said.

The only differences are labels at the bottom of the packaging symbolizing THC and a marijuana leaf. Woodward said it is easy for the untrained eye to miss.

"Regardless of their age, even an adult could get fooled by these," he said.

The OBN provided 2 Works for You with pictures of other products copying packaging from popular candies Nerds Ropes and Sour Patch Kids.

"It's mimicking kids' candy," Prince said.

"It is intriguing to a child because it's something they would usually have," Charity Gravitt of Tulsa said.

Gravitt keeps her chocolate and candy edibles locked away from her three young children. She keeps them stowed away in the fridge behind a child-proof latch. For extra precaution, Gravitt hides her edibles primarily in a locked camper in the driveway.

"Your child depends on you as a parent for safety matters," she said. "I do the absolute most to keep my kids out of it."

"The kids should not even be aware that it's in the house," Prince said. "Children are stealing it, trying it, and selling it to other people's children."

This hits home for Prince. The Bristow mother said her own 14-year-old son illegally bought marijuana.

"It's everywhere, and it's too easy [to get]," Prince said. "They are growing kids, and their minds are not made for this stuff."

Woodward said marijuana overdose hospitalizations are on a steady incline. He said the THC chips that put two in the hospital don't appear to be from an Oklahoma business.

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