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She Uses CBD Oil for Pain, Was Arrested for It at Disney

CBD oil found in purse at bag check caused a problem for Hester Burkhalter
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted May 9, 2019 8:51 AM CDT
Hester Burkhalter   (Orange County Sheriff’s Office)

(Newser) – Hester Burkhalter says she's never had so much as a speeding ticket. But while on a trip to Disney World, the 69-year-old great-grandmother spent 12 hours in jail and faced a felony charge stemming from a bottle of CBD oil, reports the Tampa Bay Times. An arrest warrant describes "illegal narcotics believed to be THC oil" found in Burkhalter’s purse at a bag check outside the Magic Kingdom on April 15, per USA Today. Though the Orange County Sheriff's Office claims a drug test kit found evidence of THC, the psychoactive property in marijuana, the 1-ounce bottle of "Select CBD" prescribed by Burkhalter's North Carolina doctor stated it contained none. "I have really bad arthritis in my legs, in my arms, and in my shoulder. I use it for the pain because it helps," Burkhalter tells Fox 35.

She's not the only one. CBD-infused products can be found on store shelves throughout Florida and other states. CBD "falls into a gray area in Florida law, though it's rare to see someone arrested for possession," the Times reports. Per the Miami Herald, the state legislature last week passed a bill that would create a hemp program, but it has yet to be signed into law. Burkhalter—who carried her prescription on the trip, which was two years in the making—was arrested for possession of hashish and released on $2,000 bail before the charge was dropped. Still, Capt. Carlos Torres says the arresting officer "certainly acted within the scope of the law," per People. "[Buying CBD oil] is a risk because you don't know what you're buying," he says. "Buying it at a store doesn't make it okay." (Pets use CBD, too.)

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