Utah Girl Denied Marijuana Dies

Charlee Nelson passed away Sunday. She had a neurological disease that caused seizures. Cannabis oil could have helped.

They named a bill "Charlee's Law" after her. Charlee Nelson, who died Sunday, was one of countless children around the country awaiting passage of bills that would allow them to use CBD oil, a form of marijuana.

The six-year-old resident of West Jordan, Utah suffered from a neurological condition called Batten disease that causes seizures, mental impairment, blindness and loss of body control, and eventually death. She was diagnosed with the disease last February.

During that time there have many accounts of how hemp oil - low in THC, high in CBD (for cannabidiol), hence minus the high - can help children who suffer from seizure conditions, such as epilepsy. Dr. Sanjay Gupta's two Weed programs on CNN have both focused on the search for CBD, which generally takes parents to Colorado for a steady and reliable supply of a strain known as Charlotte's Web.

Now states like Utah are moving ahead with legislation that will only allow legal use of CBD-rich products, primarily in the form of a tinctures taken orally. Just days before her death, the Utah State Senate voted unanimously in favor of the bill, joining the House in support. Gov. Herbert's expected to sign it.

It appears that Charlee was never treated with cannabis oil, simply because it wasn't available to her in Utah.

The big problem is finding an immediate source of CBD oil in current non-medical states such as Utah, as well as the other states with CBD legislation in the works - Georgia, Alabama and Kentucky. Each state would become the supplier via universities or, in the case of Utah, the Department of Agriculture.

If the bills are signed by the respective governors, it will still take a while for the programs to get off the ground. So why not ask the federal government for an exception to allow patients or caretakers to cross state lines and secure the oil in Colorado or California, and bring it back to Utah or wherever? With that type of provision built in, maybe children like Charlee Nelson could be saved.

Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of CelebStoner.com, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.