It seems that as long as children have gone from door to door dressed in costume and asking for candy there has been some rumor of poisoned or tampered candies coming home. Each of us can certainly remember sitting on the living room floor while Mom and Dad went through our evening’s take looking for “suspect” items. Amazingly those same “dangerous” items also seemed to be Dad’s favorite treats as well.
Parents desire to purloin some of their kids candy aside, is there a basis for the fear many have regarding tampered treats? In a word, “No.” According to Snopes there have been no verified accounts of candy being poisoned before being handed out to Trick-or-Treaters. There have been several reports of candy and apples with pins, needles, and even razor blades inserted, however in all but one of these cases, it was meant as a poorly designed prank against a single individual or group.
In that one case a Minneapolis man by the name of James Joseph Smith was charged with adulterating a Snickers bar. The bar in question was bitten into by a 14 year-old and he was pricked by the needle. No one needed to go to the hospital, and, while the 14 year-old was undoubtedly traumatized, no real physical harm occurred.
While there is no reason to fear your neighbors adulterating candy or the treats they will hand out in a couple days, that tradition of going through the children’s candy should still be upheld. While no one is going to intentionally harm your child, there are error in the manufacture of candy that can lead to broken bags, or torn cases which could lead to those candies coming in contact with unknown substances. Better to find and remove those before your kids get ahold of them. And besides, that Milky Way does look a little “suspicious,” and, it’s your favorite.
Wooten Kimbrough, P.A. Orlando Food Poisoning Attorneys