Sand Springs mother sues Snapchat after son overdoses on fentanyl purchased through app | news

Sand Springs mother sues Snapchat after son overdoses on fentanyl purchased through app |  news

SAND SPRINGS, Okla. – A Sand Springs mom is joining a lawsuit against the mobile messaging app Snapchat after her son overdosed on fentanyl purchased through the app.

Cole Brown died of an overdose in 2021. He was unresponsive in a hotel room in California the day he and his entire family moved to Sand Springs.

His mother, Rebekah Brown, said Cole struggled with substance abuse after his father died when he was 13.

She said moving to Sand Springs would have been a fresh start for Cole. He had just graduated from high school and was planning a career in Oklahoma.

After his death, Rebekah and her family moved away, but she decided to move to Oklahoma.

“And then the realization hit me that I was never going to see my son again. He was gone,” Rebekah said.

Rebekah said she wanted to join the class action to save lives and educate other parents about the dangers of Snapchat, suing the app along with 63 other families.

“I want other parents to know about Snapchat, I want them to look and see and maybe at this point

don’t even let your kids on Snapchat,” she said.

The Social Media Victims Law Center (SMVLC), a legal resource for parents of child and teen victims of social media addiction and online abuse, has filed its fifth wrongful death lawsuit in the past five months against Snap, Inc., alleging that Snapchat has disappeared . messages, “My Eyes Only” and “Snap Map” features, among other features unique to Snapchat, encourage, enable and facilitate the illegal and lethal sale of counterfeit pills containing lethal doses of fentanyl to minors and young adults.

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The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court (Case No. 23SMCV00835), alleges that Snapchat’s product design created an environment that allowed the “Snapchat Drug Cartel” to operate in a manner that directly contributed to the deaths of nine minors and young adults in Florida, Colorado, California, Pennsylvania, Georgia, and Louisiana. All died after ingesting fentanyl pills and/or edibles purchased from drug dealers linked to them on Snapchat.

“While America is in the midst of a fentanyl death crisis, Snapchat continues to profit from the sale of a product that is used by drug dealers,” said SMVLC founding attorney Matthew Bergman.

In one case, a minor died after taking what he thought was edible marijuana candy that turned out to contain a lethal amount of fentanyl, according to the suit.

“They cannot continue to turn a blind eye to the carnage with our young people and their role in it.” Bergman continued.

The lawsuit also alleges that Snapchat offers a never-ending source of vulnerable customers to drug dealers, intentionally hinders parental controls and creates unhealthy social media addictions by design.

In addition, Snapchat allows traffickers to locate and access nearby minors and young adults, affirmatively connect them with these young customers, and post and exchange drug menus and other information that go missing within 24 hours, erasing all evidence of the crime .

“We’ve heard devastating stories from families affected by the crisis, including cases where fake fentanyl-laced pills were purchased from drug dealers on Snapchat. We are determined to remove illegal drug sales from our platform and invest in proactive detection and cooperation with law enforcement to , to hold drug dealers accountable for the harm they cause to our community,” Snapchat said in its 2021 press release.

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The entire publication can be read here.

This year, Snapchat also released this press release detailing their efforts to cooperate with law enforcement.

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