Northern Ohio police say sewing needles were found in candy handed out during a sleight of hand Saturday night.
Police in the city of Fostoria, Ohio said they were made aware of two candies, including a Kit Kat, containing the needles and distributed to children, the department said in a statement Sunday.
“While we only know two candies are involved, we take this seriously and are appalled that anyone is so mad that they want to harm children in our community,” Chief Keith Loreno wrote in the statement.
Photos posted to the department’s Facebook page showed a Kit Kat with a sewing needle sticking out of the wrapper and poking through the center of the candy bar.
Police said they do not know the exact street on which the sweets were distributed. ProMedica Fostoria Community Hospital planned to X-ray Halloween candy for sharp objects on Monday from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 5 to 7 p.m., according to the statement.
Anyone with information about who may have distributed the candy is asked to call Fostoria Police at (419) 435-8573.
Jeff Beckman, spokesman for the Hershey Company, which manufactures Kit Kats in the United States, wrote in a statement to Newsweek that it’s “unfortunate that people choose to take the fun out of something as special for families as celebrating Halloween, a great American tradition.”
“We are saddened that someone is trying to hurt children by handling candy with the apparent intent to hurt someone,” he wrote. “We’re glad the tampering was discovered before anyone was harmed. It’s a good reminder for parents to check the candy their children bring home to be safe.”
“Why…why would anyone do that?” We’ve all heard of this stuff, but the fact that someone is doing this in our community is truly disturbing! The police department said in a separate message.
Parents are advised to always inspect their children’s candies before consuming them, according to the Mayo Clinic. They should discard anything that is not properly sealed, has torn packaging, or looks questionable. It is not recommended that children nibble on the candies during the trick or the treatment.
Although reports of people handling Halloween candy remain extremely rare, there have been a few cases of needles being found in candy. In 2018, sewing needles were apparently found inside Twizzlers distributed in Marshfield, Massachusetts, according to ABC News.
In recent years, concerns have shifted away from razor blades and needles. More and more parents are now concerned about the distribution of candies containing drugs. But experts say there is little to no cause for concern.
Joel Best, an expert who has spent decades researching the topic of adult-targeted cheaters, said Newsweek last week that there was virtually no evidence that children were given drugged candy in a sleight of hand.
He said there was no evidence that children were seriously injured or killed by candy during a sleight of hand.
“I find no evidence that a child was killed or seriously injured by a contaminated treat picked up during a trick or treat,” he said.
Fostoria is a city of just over 13,000 people in northwestern Ohio, about 40 miles south of Toledo.
Newsweek contacted the Fostoria Police Division for comment Monday morning, but did not hear back by post. This story will be updated with any response.
Update 11/01/21 2 PM ET – This story has been updated with a statement from The Hershey Company.