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Trends in mortality from drug poisonings, suicide, and alcohol-induced deaths in the United States From 2000 to 2017

9/11/20--This serial cross-sectional study using US mortality data from 2000 to 2017, including 1,446 ,177 drug poisoning, suicide, and alcohol-induced premature deaths found that demographic characteristics and geographic patterns varied by cause of death, suggesting that increasing death rates from these causes were not concentrated in 1 group or region. Specialized interventions tailored for the underlying drivers of each cause of death are urgently needed.. Read

Cannabis-related death in Australia

7/30/20--This presentation, based on research conducted by Emma Zahra, a Research Officer at the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC), UNSW Sydney, explores the findings of the first national level study that investigated 559 cannabis-related deaths through the National Coronial Information System includes drug-related morbidity and mortality and treatment pathways. Read

The Millennial mental-health crisis

6/11/20--Suicides and overdoses among young adults were already skyrocketing before the pandemic started. Now experts fear that the situation is going to get even worse. Interviews with more than a dozen experts on suicide and mental health reveal that Millennials are financially and generally stressed, and it’s driving some of them to extremes. In a report published last year by the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality, the economists Mark Duggan and Jackie Li found that mortality rates for people from ages 25 to 34 had risen by more than 20 percent since 2008. Read

Trends in the Incidence and Lethality of Suicidal Acts in the United States, 2006 to 2015

4/22/20--In this cross-sectional study based on national representative data of 1,222,419 suicidal acts, increased suicide rates were associated with an increase in both incidence rates and lethality of suicidal acts from 2006 to 2015. In subgroup analyses, incidence of suicidal acts increased among female persons, adolescents, and older adults aged 65 to 74 years, whereas suicidal acts became more lethal among both sexes and persons aged 20 to 64 years. Read

Whiskey, marijuana and speed. New details revealed about deadly Bayshore Boulevard crash.

1/10/20--Benjamin Douglas Ehas faces charges of DUI manslaughter and vehicular homicide in Thursday’s deadly crash. Ehas told officers he smoked marijuana at about 7 a.m., then imbibed the whiskey later that morning, according to his arrest report. Investigators said he had a blood-alcohol content level of 0.234, almost three times the level at which Florida law presumes impairment. Read

More dogs falling prey to THC poisoning. Vets say legal marijuana is a key factor.

1/10/20--Dog poisoning from ingesting cannabis is sharply on the rise. The Schaumburg-based American Veterinary Medical Association reports that cannabis-related calls to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ pet poison-control hotline rose 765% during the same period from 2018 to 2019. Also, the Pet Poison Helpline has reported an increase of more than 400% in cannabis poisoning calls over the past six years. Read

Marijuana detected in homicide victims nearly doubles

1/8/20--Researchers at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health assessed the time trends in alcohol and marijuana detected in homicide victims and found that the prevalence of marijuana almost doubled, increasing from 22 percent in 2004 to 42 percent in 2016. The findings are published in Injury Epidemiology. Read

The rate of teen suicide in Colorado increased by 58% in 3 Years, making it the cause of 1 in 5 adolescent deaths

9/17/19--According to a new report by the United Health Foundation, Colorado had the highest increase in the teen suicide rate in the U.S. since 2016. Dr. Linda Genen, the group’s chief medical officer for women’s health, said Colorado's teen suicide rate increased 58 percent from 2016 to 2019, but the reason is unclear. In the past three years, teen suicide in Colorado rose from 12.9 to 20.4 deaths per 100,000 adolescents ages 15-19, according to the report. Overall, that rate put Colorado as the sixth worst state. Read

Shell casings, med marijuana, money among items found in murder victim’s home

7/9/19--According to officers who searched the home of Andrew "Sawyer" English, who operated the marijuana dispensary "Vapor Express" in Edmond, shell casings outside the home, drug paraphernalia, medical marijuana, and large sums of cash were found following his death. Read

Colorado kids and teens are dying at a rate higher than the U.S. average — and suicide is to blame

6/17/19--Colorado is among the wealthiest, healthiest states in the nation but has a higher teen and child death rate than the national average, a rate that has grown worse over the past two decades. The reason is suicide, which reached an all-time high in 2017 and is the leading cause of death for Coloradans ages 10-24. Read

Police: Accused killer told cops that bong hits led to violent episode

5/9/19--Blood tests on Bryn Spejcher, who is accused of murdering Chad O’Melia, revealed the presence of marijuana. An examination of the burned plant material remaining in the bong she used and the five grams of marijuana collected revealed no drugs beyond THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. Read

Military mom warns about the dangers of medical marijuana

4/27/19--Sally Schindel, co-founder of MomsStrong.com, says her son, Andy Zorn, committed suicide because of his marijuana use. Zorn served with the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division in Iraq. Read

Where pedestrian deaths are up, is marijuana to blame?

2/28/18--Pedestrian deaths in traffic accidents have reached levels not seen in years, and a safety group has sought to explain why. It has identified several possible causes, like digital distractions and an increase in driving. Now it has added another: marijuana. Read

State police: Driver in crash that killed 4 had THC in system

11/21/17--According to Vermont State Police, Steven Holmes, 21, of Chatsworth, Georgia, who was the driver involved in a crash resulting in his death and killing three of his passengers, had a high-level of THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, in his system. Read

The truth behind the ‘first marijuana overdose death’ headlines

11/17/17--A case report about the seizure and death of an 11-month old after exposure to cannabis has prompted headlines about “the first marijuana overdose death." Co-authors Thomas Nappe and Christopher Hoyte explained that they are are absolutely not saying that marijuana killed that child. They simply observed the unusual sequence of events, documented it, and alerted the medical community that it is worth studying a possible relationship between cannabis and the child’s cause of death, myocarditis, or inflammation of the heart muscle. Read

Man convicted in DWI crash that killed unborn baby may get money in lawsuit blaming Pizza Hut for it

11/15/17--According to Shelby County prosecuting attorney Brad Landwerlen, David G. Pike, who was convicted in a 2015 DWI crash that killed an unborn baby while making a Pizza Hut delivery, may get cash from a lawsuit against his employer, at the time, over the incident. Read

Colorado doctors claim first marijuana overdose death

11/17/17--Two poison control doctors claim to have documented the first known case of death by marijuana overdose, sparking a medical debate over what killed an 11-month-old baby in Colorado two years ago. The doctors behind the case report, Doctors Thomas Nappe and Christopher Hoyte, worked on the baby’s care as part of their duties at the regional poison control center. They claim that damage to the child’s heart muscle was brought on by ingesting marijuana. Read

Eric Bolling’s 19-year-old son had cocaine, marijuana and opioid drugs in system when he died

10/26/17--Six weeks after former Fox News host Eric Bolling‘s only child, 19-year-old Eric Chase Bolling, was found dead on Sept. 9, his cause of death has been revealed. The Boulder County Coroner’s report lists the cause of death as “mixed drug intoxication” that included marijuana, cocaine, and opioids, and it has been ruled as an accident. Read

Engineer in deadly Chester Amtrak crash had marijuana in system

10/11/17--The National Transportation Safety Board says the engineer involved in a deadly Amtrak crash in Chester last year had marijuana in his system. The train was heading from New York to Savannah, Georgia, when it struck the backhoe in Chester, about 15 miles outside of Philadelphia. Read

Pediatric death due to Myocarditis after exposure to cannabis

8/31/17--Since marijuana legalization, pediatric exposures to cannabis have increased. To date, pediatric deaths from cannabis exposure have not been reported. In areas where marijuana is commercially available or decriminalized, the authors of this case report urge clinicians to preventively counsel parents and include cannabis exposure in the differential diagnosis of patients presenting with myocarditis. Read

Developing a statistical model to fill in the blanks on death certificates

8/7/17--A new study presents a correction procedure to refine data reporting opioid and heroin deaths per US state, which results in significant shifts in state-by-state mortality rates. This truer picture helps to remove an important barrier to formulating effective policies to address this serious drug epidemic. Read

Insurer refuses to cover marijuana candy murder

5/8/17--United Specialty Insurance refuses to cover Gaia’s Garden, a Colorado-based marijuana candy company, for selling the “Karma Kandy Orange Ginger” under whose influence a man supposedly became psychotic and murdered his wife. Denying that it has any obligation to defend the candy maker, United Specialty says Gaia’s Gardens is on its own. Read

Highland County coroner: Marijuana is ‘gateway to hell’

3/17/17--Highland County coroner Dr. Jeff Beery believes marijuana is a gateway to hell. According to Berry, there has been a steady increase in deaths related one way or another to drugs, raising fatalities connected to illicit drugs to alarming proportions. He said the word “epidemic” is not sufficient to describe the toll being taken on Highland County. “It’s a craze, not an epidemic.” Read

These mothers of suicides don’t think marijuana is harmless

Sally Schindel and Lori Robinson created Moms Strong, a support group that seeks to “unmask the marijuana charade.” The women often give talks at schools, juvenile detention centers, and community groups to aid in the organization’s mission to inform and educate people about those harmed by marijuana. Both mothers united because they believe that high-potency marijuana led their sons to suicide. Read

New study shows Colorado heroin-related deaths are doubling

4/6/17--The Heroin Response Work Group released a new study looking at heroin in Colorado. The study compares heroin use from 2011 to 2015. In 2011, statewide there were 79 heroin-related deaths. By 2015 that number doubled to 160. Read

Marijuana contributed to Wyoming triple fatal crash

4/3/17--Autopsy and toxicology results released for the individuals killed in the March 14 crash on Highway 789 indicated that the deaths of passengers Destinee Wheeler, 15, of Hudson and Paul McEwan, 20, were determined to be homicides. Both Wheeler and McEwan also had marijuana in their system at the time of the crash. Read

Killer who blamed marijuana pleads guilty to second-degree murder

2/6/17--Richard Kirk, the Denver man who almost single-handedly revived the old-timey notion of marijuana-induced violence by killing his wife after eating cannabis candy in 2014, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder last Friday. His deal with prosecutors calls for a sentence of 25 to 30 years, followed by five years of parole. Read

Death rates for young, white Americans increased from 1999 to 2014

2/2/17--A report based on data collected from the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics shows an increase in the death rates from 1999 to 2014 for young, white people due to a surge in suicides and accidents, with the latter being largely a result of drug overdoses. This is consistent with another recent report showing the death rate from heroin overdoses has quadrupled from 2010 to 2015 among Millennials aged 25 to 34. Read

Colorado man gets jail time, probation for driving high

12/23/16--Jessy Wayne McElroy has been sentenced to 10 months in jail for driving while high on marijuana and causing a fatal crash killing 60-year-old motorcyclist Gary Willis. McElroy has been ordered to serve two years of probation after his jail sentence. Read

Marijuana found in accused driver’s blood

11/4/16--Steven Bourgoin, the wrong-way driver charged with killing five Mad River Valley teens during a fiery crash on Interstate 89 in Williston last month, had strong evidence of marijuana use in his blood system, according to the toxicology report. It is illegal in Vermont for any amount of Delta-9 THC (cannabis) to be in a driver's system. Under Vermont law, drivers are presumed to be under the influence with any measurable amount in their systems. Read

Insight with John Ferrugia: Marijuana – The State of High

10/27/16--In the premiere of Rocky Mountain PBS' investigative series, "Insight", news anchor John Ferrugia explores what is unknown about the risks of high potency THC for those who "dab" so-called "wax", "honey", or "shatter" that can bathe the brain with hundreds of milligrams of the drug compared to a limit of 10 milligrams per serving of edibles infused with THC. Read

Rash of neighborhood burglaries preceded fatal shooting in Denver

10/14/16--The shooting of two kids who had repeatedly hopped a fence to steal marijuana plants was the inevitable conclusion to an escalating series of crimes including graffiti tagging, car thefts, and burglaries that made people worry about their safety. Denver crime statistics verify that property crimes were on the rise in the Whittier neighborhood. Read

Man arrested after allegedly killing teen in marijuana-filled backyard

10/10/16--Keith David Hammock allegedly shot two teenagers who apparently were trying to steal marijuana plants from his backyard. One 15-year-old boy was killed and a 14-year-old was wounded and possibly paralyzed. Hammock is being held for investigation of murder, attempted murder and investigation of felony marijuana cultivation. Read

Colorado murder trial set; marijuana intoxication could be key factor

9/29/16--Richard Kirk is being held for investigation of first-degree murder in the death of his wife in their Denver home. Police are investigating whether marijuana played a role in the killing since he purchased and partially ate marijuana-infused candy before the shooting. His attorneys might argue that marijuana intoxication played a key role. Read

Washington shooter had a marijuana history

9/27/16--Washington Shooter Arcan Cetin, who opened fire in the Macy’s at Cascade Mall killing 5 people on September 23, had a marijuana history that may have come before his mental health issues. When stories that make national news are tracked, marijuana use is often a common trait in many young killers. Read

Driver high on marijuana when he killed Portland cyclist

9/14/16--Kenneth Britt Smith was high on medical marijuana when he struck and killed a bicyclist on Northeast Lombard Street last December -- then fled the scene -- and will be sentenced to more than six years in prison later this month. Read