1 marijuana cookie + 2 young children = 3rd degree felony charges …

Photo: Facebook/Morgan County Sheriff’s Office

MOUNTAIN GREEN, Morgan County, Utah, May 30, 2017 (Gephardt Daily) — A woman from New Mexico had a scare Saturday morning when her daughters, ages 3 and 5, ate a cookie that wasn’t intended for them. The treat contained marijuana.

Morgan County Deputy Sheriff Gary Dudley said the woman and her husband were staying in a vacation home in Mountain Green with their daughters. They were getting ready to go somewhere, so the girls went out to wait in the car.

That’s where they found the cookie. When the parents came outside, the girls were finishing up the last few crumbs.

Dudley said the mother initially did the wrong thing, having the cookie and leaving it where the kids found it — but then, he said, she did the right thing by getting them medical attention. She took the girls to the fire station in Mountain Green, and from there they were taken to a hospital in Ogden.

Quite a few people who heard about this incident commented on various websites that the mom didn’t need to worry about the kids — “the kids would have just slept it off,” “it’s impossible to overdose on weed” — and now the mom is in trouble for “no reason.”

Deputy Sheriff Dudley told Gephardt Daily that simply isn’t true.

“It’s irresponsible thinking to say the kids would be fine, just sleep it off,” he said. “People in Colorado overdose on weed.

“Prescriptions (of medical marijuana) are based on the individual. Can you imagine a 30-pound child ingesting something prescribed for a 200-pound man?”

The cookie the children ate was not prescribed for anyone — it was recreational.

A Google search for cannabis turns up a number of sites dedicated to the safe use of legal marijuana. Most of them emphasize the difference in effect between smoking/vaping weed and ingesting it as an “edible.” The edibles are generally a lot stronger and produce a sensation that can be much more intense than inhaling.

According to these sites, the edibles are slower to take effect and take longer to wear off. They advise people not to overdo it, and they warn that the symptoms of an overdose (yes, they call it an overdose) are rapid heart beat, paranoia, extreme discomfort and fear that you are dying.

The mom did the absolutely right thing by getting medical attention for her little girls, Dudley said.

Will she pay a price, and to what extent? That remains to be seen. Dudley said the medical personnel at the hospital alerted law enforcement. A deputy went over and interviewed the mother and then arrested her. She was jailed and posted bail.

She is facing two counts of third-degree felony child endangerment and will have to appear in court. If she doesn’t show up for court, her name will go into a national database and will come up in any future contact with law enforcement. Medical marijuana is legal in New Mexico for qualifying patients who have specific medical conditions. Recreational marijuana is illegal and a criminal offense there.

“Police don’t have options in these cases,” Dudley said, explaining that the law is what it is, and an officer can’t just give someone a warning when the law says it’s a third-degree felony.

Being arrested and charged, however, isn’t the same as a verdict and a sentence from a judge. Dudley said the court will take a lot of things into consideration, and he really can’t predict the outcome.

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