Legal highs: bad reporting follows the death of a teenager in Bexley
The Star has news of a “Legal high alert as teen dies after ‘inhaling hippy crack at party'”.
Reporting on legal highs has been frenzied. Will the Star stick to the facts and provide a direct link between the nitrous oxide and the tragedy?
Cops said the 18-year-old was believed to have been drinking and taking legal high nitrous oxide at the bash in Bexley, south-east London
We don’t know, then, if the teenager died from the so-called hippy crack. All we know is they he died.
The Metropolitan Police say:
“Next of kin have been notified. A post-mortem will be scheduled in due course. At this stage the death is being treated as unexplained pending the findings of the post-mortem.”
The Star’s headliner is bunkum, then. We do not know why the teenager died. We do not know if they had taken any stimulants.
The Star adds:
But abusing nitrous oxide can lead to loss of blood pressure, fainting and even heart attacks.
But not death.
Seventeen people in the UK died between 2006 and 2012 after taking the legal high.
But we not know if it was the legal high that killed them.
Lest we think the Star is alone in the sensationalist reporting, the BBC calls the dead man the “‘Laughing gas’ teenager”.
But the BBC does add another fact:
The Metropolitan Police said he was believed to have been drinking alcohol as well as ingesting legal high nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas.
Could not the legal and taxed booze have played its part?