Woman With Utah Ties Faces Jail Time For Selling Illegal CBD Vapes

Oct 21, 2019, 10:55 PM | Updated: 11:02 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — A woman with Utah ties faces up to 40 years in prison for sickening more than 50 people in Utah after peddling counterfeit CBD vapes.

Janell Thompson ran a company known as YOLO — an acronym for “you only live once.” However, it was a phone call into the Utah Poison Control Center that helped crack the case.

Lately, the news has been full of vaping-related lung illnesses, but the cases tied to YOLO were different. Patients presented with symptoms of hallucinations and in some cases, even seizures.

Barbara Insley Crouch is the executive director at the Utah Poison Control Center. She has handled thousands of calls during her 29 years with poison control.

“About 60% of our cases involve children under the age of 6,” she said.

Between late 2017 and early 2018, Crouch said the calls got a little strange.

“There were calls from emergency room doctors telling us of patients coming in with seizures, hallucinations and loss of consciousness,” she said.

All patients claimed they had been vaping CBD.

“This did not make sense and was not adding up right,” she said.

CBD is the non-THC part of a marijuana plant, so those symptoms should not be happening.

“I alerted the health department and they launched an investigation,” she said.

Investigators tested the product and found no CBD present.

“What they ended up finding was a synthetic marijuana or spice-like compound,” she said.

Then, the next month Crouch got another call.

“I got a call from this woman who said she thought she knew the source of this synthetic (drug) and that she knew who was manufacturing and supplying this product.”

The company was called YOLO.

Crouch alerted local authorities of the woman and the telephone tip. As time went on, the calls stopped.

“I never knew what happened,” she said.

Until Monday, when she heard that the woman at the center of it all pleaded guilty.

“It was interesting to see it come full circle,” she said.

Crouch’s retirement is nearing and the days of being in the poison control are numbered, but the call that ended a mystery illness affecting so many Utahns is one she will likely always remember.

“It’s amazing to see this sort of mystery finally be solved,” she said.

RELATED: Vape Shop Owners Say ‘Flavor Ban’ Hurts Businesses, Customers

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

A Ute Football mini helmet at the U of U official store. (KSL-TV)...
Shelby Lofton

‘It was a dream come true;’ Utah football fans hyped up for another Rose Bowl

Utah football fans are making plans for the Rose Bowl after winning the PAC-12 championship game Friday night.
17 hours ago
The former Utah man and pilot, Dan Ragan....

Utah resident remembers pilot killed in Dallas Air Show crash

The former Utah man who tragically passed away in a deadly air show crash in Texas is being remembered by neighbors and friends. 
17 hours ago
FILE (Photo by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images for UNITAS)...
Pat Reavy, KSL.com

Southern Utah man accused of abusing girls at residential treatment program

A St. George man employed at a residential treatment program for troubled girls was arrest Thursday for investigation of sexually abusing two of the girls.
17 hours ago
A bullet hole is seen in the glass window and the blinds....
Andrew Adams

Neighborhood concerned after bullet goes through home walls

A gunshot through an upstairs window in Saratoga Springs was concerning to more than just one family Friday as others in the Hawks Landing and Fox Hollow neighborhoods said this had happened before and were asking for help so it didn’t happen again.
17 hours ago
A stream of water sprays over the building that is engulfed in flames....
Brooke Williams

Two-alarm fire at commercial building early Saturday under investigation

Two alarm fire at paving company is still being investigated.
17 hours ago
Follow @KSL_AlexCabrero...
Alex Cabrero

3 vacant house fires spark in one week in SLC’s Ballpark neighborhood

Community frustrated after three fires broke out at the same row of vacant homes in Salt Lake City's Ballpark neighborhood in just the past week.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Woman With Utah Ties Faces Jail Time For Selling Illegal CBD Vapes