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This story is disturbing on so many levels, but perhaps that's life with teenagers.
Two teen girls in Davis, California apparently baked sugar cookies containing the ashen remains of one of the girls' grandfather, and fed them to nine fellow students at their high school, Da Vinci Charter Academy. Some students were totally unaware of the cookies' contents, and were horrified when they learned the truth. Others knew exactly what they were eating.
Though this whole escapade seems almost implausible, when Davis Police Lt. Paul Doroshov was asked if the allegation seemed credible, Doroshov gave a long sigh, and then said, "Yeah." And we thought Keith Richards was twisted for snorting his father's ashes!
For Some, No Harm No Foul
Some of the kids who ate the cookies, knowing they contained cremation remains, probably are not looking to file a lawsuit. For instance, Andy Knox, was initially skeptical when offered a cookie the baker claimed "contained a special ingredient." He thought it was drugs, but when she said it wasn't, and pulled the urn out of her backpack, he decided to comply.
According to Knox, the cookie didn't taste unusual but "if you ever ate sand as a kid, you know, you can kind of feel it crunching in between your teeth. So, there was a little tiny bit of that." He added that the cookie contained "tiny gray flecks."
Emotional Distress Claim Against the Bakers?
According to the high school, some of the other students who didn't know the cookie's secret ingredient are experiencing social and emotional issues relating to eating the ash-ladened cookies. We do know that there are no health issues relating to the cookies. However, police don't know yet if there were actual remains in the cookies, or if they were merely tainted to make it look that way, in a cruel hoax.
Whether it was a hoax or not, students who ate the cookies prior to learning their contents may be able to sue for Intentional Infliction of emotion distress, which is a state law for extreme or outrageous conduct that intentionally or recklessly causes severe emotional distress. It's pretty safe to say this is outrageous conduct.
As you're thumbing through the pages of your Halloween cookbook for party food ideas, maybe stick to Meatball Creepy Crawlers and Mac 'o Lanterns. And perhaps take a moment of silence for the baker's grandpa. Hopefully he deserved better than this.