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DEA Still Demonising Glow Sticks Despite Court Ruling

Author: Jonty Adderley
Thursday, December 19, 2002
America's Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) are continuing to teach police officers that rave paraphernalia including lollipops and glow sticks are indicators of drug use, according to a report in this week's State Journal Register (Illinois). According to the newspaper DEA special agent George E Hood hosted a training session for 52 local officers this week at which he continued to focus on glow sticks, despite a recent court ruling dismissing the connection.

"Parents need to be aware," warned DEA special agent George E Hood.

"Their kid may be leaving the house with a bag of Skittles (candy) and some lollipops and they think the kids are going to snack all night. In reality, the pills are hidden in the candy bag and the lollipops are to ease the chewing sensation they get when they take the drug."

His comments came months after U.S. District Judge G. Thomas Porteous ruled that prosecutors cannot force the organizers of a rave dance party to ban pacifiers or glow sticks, having agreed with civil liberties campaigners the ACLU about the absurdity of the link.

"It is nonsensical to think that glow sticks and masks can be used to ingest drugs, which is how the law defines paraphernalia," said Graham Boyd, Director of the ACLU's Drug Policy Litigation Project, at the time.

"It is time the American public realized that raves are not the havens for rampant drug use that the government has led them to believe and are, in fact, an established form of youth culture."