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24 'lolly' overdoses at US concert

Associated Press logo Associated Press 7/08/2016

Two dozen concertgoers in the United States have suffered overdoses after eating marijuana-laced lollies.

No fatalities were reported at the Ohio Dreams sports camp complex in Butler, about 100km northeast of Columbus, where the weekend-long EST 2016 rap music festival was being held. The Ohio concert was dubbed The Last Weekend on Earth.

Major Joe Masi of the Richland County Sheriff's Department told the Mansfield News Journal someone began tossing out bags of the colourful lollies on Saturday.

The packages contained about 20 pieces each and were marked "prescribed medibles" with a reference to a commercial lolly brand, according to photos posted to social media.

Masi said each piece had "a very, very high dose of THC", the chemical that gives marijuana its mind-altering effects. Only one or two lollies would get a user high, but some people were eating whole packets, officials said.

Starting around 4pm, ambulances loaded with overdose victims were arriving at OhioHealth in nearby Mansfield, said hospital spokeswoman Nikki Workman.

She said 24 people were treated, including with the overdose antidote naloxone.

WEWS-TV reported the person giving out the lollies was a man wearing a grey baseball cap with a red visor and a black T-shirt with a marijuana leaf on it.

The festival, headlined by Cleveland rapper Machine Gun Kelly, was set to continue through the weekend.

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