Va. mother charged after 4-year-old son dies from eating ‘large amount’ of THC gummies

A mother was taken into custody in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, following the death of her young son who ate THC gummies.

Dorothy Annette Clements, 30, of Spotsylvania was indicted by a grand jury on Monday and was taken into custody on Thursday. She is being charged with felony murder and child neglect.

The four-year-old boy died in May, two days after eating THC gummies while at his home in the 5400 block of Jamie Court, according to a news release from the Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office.

THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the active ingredient in marijuana — which the Center for Disease Control and Prevention said can be dangerous or deadly when consumed by children.

Detectives said the child ingested a “large amount” of THC gummies, and that his doctor told them his death could have been prevented if he’d received medical attention sooner.

Deputies said comments Clements told them didn’t match up with evidence seized at her home.

Clements is being held on no bond at the Rappahannock Regional Jail.

WTOP talked with Dr. Brian R.E. Schultz, a pediatric emergency medicine physician at Children’s National Hospital, earlier this year about the dangers of legal and illegal THC edibles to children.

“If you’re going to use these substances, just make sure they are very secure … treat them like any other medication that can have very significant side effects if kids get a hold of them,” Schultz implored. “So, not just in the fridge, not just in a drawer, not just in a cabinet or pantry. They should be up and away and locked.”

Anyone who suspects they’ve ingested something dangerous should not guess what to do. Free, confidential answers and information are available from poison control experts.

You can get help online, or text POISON to 484848, or call 1-800-222-1222.

Jessica Kronzer

Jessica Kronzer graduated from James Madison University in May 2021 after studying media and politics. She enjoys covering politics, advocacy and compelling human-interest stories.

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