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Soldier Who Brought Cupcakes Is Convicted After Troops Grew Paranoid

Canadian bombardier made marijuana dessert at home
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2021 6:55 PM CDT
Updated Aug 22, 2021 11:15 AM CDT
Soldier Who Brought Cupcakes Is Convicted After Troops Grew Paranoid
Canadian soldiers who'd eaten a cupcake began having trouble during an exercise with live firearms.   (Getty/CatEyePerspective)

(Newser) – Canadian soldiers complained of feeling paranoid, sluggish, and confused during a live firearms field exercise on a hot day in 2018. Medical officials were called to the training site in New Brunswick, and the cause was traced to the homemade chocolate cupcakes the troops had just eaten, the BBC reports. On Wednesday, Bombardier Chelsea Cogswell, who passed around the treats, was convicted of administering "a noxious thing" to eight soldiers without their consent. She was in charge of the canteen at the time and distributed them there.

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Five soldiers and one cupcake wrapper later tested positive for cannabis, which was legalized in Canada three months later. Cogswell, who joined the army in 2012 and is still serving, had a prescription for medical marijuana. It's the first such case in the Canadian military, officials said. The soldiers said they started feeling the effects about a half-hour after eating the cupcakes, which had chocolate icing and a jelly bean on top. The troops lost focus, per the CBC, and some became worried about handling weapons.

Cogswell also was convicted of one count of behaving in a disgraceful manner, a charge under Canada's National Defense Act that carries a maximum five-year prison sentence, prosecutors said. She said she'd been called a misogynist term by other troops and told an investigator that she wanted a transfer because she "couldn't take the unit any longer." After finding her guilty, the judge told Cogswell, "I've been on this bench long enough to see that there are a lot of good people that sometimes exercise very poor judgment," she said. Sentencing is scheduled for November. (Read more marijuana stories.)

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