A 69-year-old great-grandmother whose doctor suggested she use CBD oil to alleviate pain was arrested for carrying it at Disney World during a trip she and her family had planned for two years.
Hester Jordan Burkhalter had scrimped and saved to spend April 15 at the happiest place on Earth, but instead she spent it in jail after she was charged with possession of hashish in Orange County, Florida, The News & Observer wrote.
Her arrest came after an Orange County sheriff’s deputy discovered CBD oil in her purse at a checkpoint to enter the Orlando theme park, authorities said.
Burkhalter had begun using the oil to lessen the pain caused by her arthritis at her doctor’s recommendation, which he also put in writing, she said.
“I have really bad arthritis, in my legs, in my arms and in my shoulder and I used it for the pain, because it helps,” Burkhalter told WOFL-TV.
CBD, or cannabinol, is an extract from cannabis and has been found to have medicinal properties. It does not make the user “high,” unlike THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, another extract found in the same plant that is the active agent in marijuana, authorities say.
Burkhalter’s container of peppermint CBD oil apparently noted it had 0 milligrams of THC, but tests run by the deputy allegedly found the oil contained traces of THC.
Though Congress last year removed hemp and extracts such as CBD from the federal list of illegal drugs, Florida has not yet signed the newly passed legislation.
Burkhalter was released from jail on $2,000 bond after 12 hours. She told WOFL-TV the experience was hard to fathom.
“I didn’t know what to think. I couldn’t understand it,” Burkhalter said, adding she doesn't feel she's done anything wrong. “... I’ve never had but one speeding ticket in my life. I’ve never been in a jailhouse.”
The charges against Burkhalter were ultimately dropped, but the sheriff’s office said the arresting deputy was following the law when he took her into custody.