Police testing gummy bears that made Naperville North students sick

  • Twelve students became ill Tuesday after eating gummy bears at Naperville North High School. Police said they are investigating whether the gummies may have contained marijuana oil.

      Twelve students became ill Tuesday after eating gummy bears at Naperville North High School. Police said they are investigating whether the gummies may have contained marijuana oil. Paul Michna | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 12/7/2016 12:34 PM

A 17-year-old Naperville North High School student was in police custody Tuesday on suspicion that he brought gummy bears laced with marijuana to school, causing 12 students to get sick, authorities said.

The students were taken to Edward Hospital in Naperville beginning about 10:30 a.m. complaining of symptoms including fast heart rates, dizziness and dry mouths, Naperville police Cmdr. Jason Arres said.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Edward spokesman Keith Hartenberger said all the students had been treated for ingestion of the gummy bears and released by 5 p.m.

Arres said the students told police that they think the gummies contained marijuana oil, but police have not confirmed whether that's true. Arres said police, working with a crime lab, will test the candy to determine what substance, if any, was added.

Police also are following leads about other students who may have been involved and investigating how the candy got into the school, how it was distributed and whether the students who ate it knew it might have contained another substance.

Meanwhile, the student accused of bringing the gummy bears to school was at the Naperville police station as investigators worked with the school and Naperville Unit District 203 to determine the appropriate punishment, Arres said.

"We need to figure out what level of accountability we need to hold them at," he said.

Naperville North Principal Stephanie Posey let parents know about the health concern in an email early Tuesday afternoon. The students were taken to the hospital "for safety precautions," Posey's email said.

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"This candy made those students both uncomfortable and sick, so they were taken to the nurse's office for care," Posey said in the email. "Each student had varying degrees of discomfort and subsequent treatment."

Two other students were taken to Edward Hospital for unrelated medical issues, Arres and Hartenberger said. One of them remained under observation late Tuesday afternoon.

District 203 spokeswoman Michelle Fregoso said officials encourage parents to talk with their children about making healthy choices and that school officials can suggest community resources that support well-being.

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