Unhappiest place on Earth! One great-grandma from North Carolina learned that Disney World isn’t quite so magical when she was arrested at the amusement park in Orlando in April.
Hester Jordan Burkhalter found herself in trouble after putting her purse down for inspection at a checkpoint on April 15. According to the arrest report from the Orange County police, a member of the security team alerted an officer when he found what he believed to be CBD oil that was labeled “Select THC.”
THC is the psychoactive chemical in marijuana that gives users the high that they experience, according to the National Institutes of Health. However, CBD doesn’t have the psychoactive effects.
Per Officer Vincent Lebron’s report, “[Burkhalter] was advised the contents of the glass bottle will be tested for THC. I tested the substance using a Marijuana presumptive drug test, the kit turned Red, indicating a presumptive positive result for the presence of THC.”
At that point, Lebron placed the 69-year-old under arrest for Possession of Hashish, which is a felony offense, and booked her. The glass bottle containing the CBD oil, which was labeled “1000mg CBD / 0mg THC,” was submitted into evidence.
“I have really bad arthritis in my legs, in my arms, and in my shoulder,” Burkhalter explained to Orlando’s Fox 35, noting that her doctor had recommended the product to her. “I use [THC oil] for the pain because it helps.”
The great-grandma, who said her family had been saving for the trip for more than two years, didn’t know what to think of her arrest. “I couldn’t understand it! I did nothing wrong!” she exclaimed. “I’ve never had but maybe one speeding ticket in my life. I’ve never been in a jailhouse!”
According to Fox 35, she was in jail for about 12 hours before being released on $2,000 bail.
Her lawyer, Jennifer Synnamon, told the news outlet: “The funny thing is, a little drop of oil with the CBD is a felony. Meanwhile, you can have up to 19.9 grams of leaf marijuana, and it’s a first degree demeanor.”
Capt. Carlos Torres of the Orange County Sheriff’s Office defended the arrest. “In this particular case, the deputy encountered a substance that he knew to be illegal,” he explained to Fox 35. “He tested it, and at that point, he developed probable cause to make the arrest.”
Prosecutors eventually dropped the charges against Burkhalter.
According to the news outlet, any form of CBD is illegal in the state of Florida unless you have a prescription.