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Teenager dies after eating spicy chip in social media challenge

BOSTON (AP) — A Massachusetts teenager who participated in a spicy tortilla chip challenge on social media died after ingesting a large amount of chili pepper extract, according to an autopsy report obtained by The Associated Press.

Harris Wolobah, a 10th grader from Worcester City, died on September 1, 2023 after eating the chip. He was found unconscious by police called to his home and taken to hospital, where he died.

The cause of death was listed as cardiopulmonary arrest “in the context of recent ingestion of a food substance with a high concentration of capsaicin.”

The 14-year-old boy also suffered from an enlarged heart and a congenital heart defect, according to the report, whose findings were shared with the AP in an email from Elaine Driscoll, a spokeswoman for the Executive Office of Public Safety and Massachusetts. Security.

The cause of death was determined Feb. 27 and the death certificate was delivered to the city clerk’s office on March 5, Driscoll said.

The chip manufacturer, Paqui, asked retailers to stop selling the product shortly after Harris’ death.

The chip, sold individually for about $10, is wrapped in foil in a coffin-shaped box containing the warning that it is intended for the “vengeful pleasure of intense heat and pain.” . The warning states that the chip is for adult consumption only and should be kept out of the reach of children.

Despite the warning, the children had no problem buying the chips. There have been reports across the country of teenagers falling ill after participating in the challenge, including three California high school students sent to the hospital. Paramedics were called to a Minnesota school when seven students became ill after participating in the challenge.

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News Source : apnews.com

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