HALLOWEEN QUIZ: How Many Times Does this Police Department Warn Parents About Unwrapped Candy?

“To avoid tragedy” the Gloucester Township, NJ, police department is warning parents: Do not let your kids eat unwrapped candy!

Do not let your kids eat unwrapped candy!

Do not let your kids eat unwrapped candy!

Really — look at the “safety tips” below. It’s diagnosable OCPCD: Obsessive-Compulsive Poison Candy Disorder.

And by the way, Gloucester Townshipians, you might want to remind the cops that, um, no szkrrsytaa
child has ever been poisoned by a stranger’s candy on Halloween
. So kids can “avoid tragedy” AND eat unwrapped candy till they vomit (from too much candy. Not poison).

This is from the Gloucester Township Patch:

Gloucester Township, NJ — …Gloucester Township Police are reminding parents to check their children’s candy before they start eating.

Of course they are. And so:

 Police are advising the following steps to avoid tragedy this Halloween night: [Start counting now!] 

• Instruct children not to open their candy until they return home.

• Inspect all candy for tampering before allowing them to start eating.

• Accept only wrapped and packaged candy.

• Do not eat candy that has been unwrapped or opened.

• Never eat fruit or other unwrapped items.

• Throw away any candy or food that is not wrapped tightly by the candy company. Please call the Gloucester Township Police Department if you believe it was tampered with.

• If you should find an object in the candy or find anything unusual about it, call the Gloucester Township Police Department at 856-228-4500.

• Do not give homemade or unwrapped treats to children.

• Avoid giving choking hazards such as gum, peanuts, hard candies, or small toys as treats to young children.

• Children shouldn’t snack while they’re trick-or-treating. Parents should check treats at home. Give children an early meal before they head out to discourage snacking.

• Watch for signs of tampering, such as small pinholes in wrappers and torn or loose packages.

• Inspect all candy for safety before children eat it.

• Accept and give out candy that isn’t easily unwrapped. Candies such as Tootsie Rolls, hard candies and certain bubble gums with twist-type wrappings can be tampered with more easily than those that are sealed.

Let me know your tally!

And do not let your children eat unwrapped candy!

(Sorry — I’ve been brainwashed.) – L


Strychnine Pops! My favorite!

Strychnine Pops! My favorite!


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57 Responses to HALLOWEEN QUIZ: How Many Times Does this Police Department Warn Parents About Unwrapped Candy?

  1. BL October 31, 2016 at 6:21 pm #

    ” It’s diagnosable OCPCD: Obsessive-Compulsive Poison Candy Disorder.”

    We need to come up with a cure for this.

    In the meantime, all sufferers will have to be incarcerated for our, er, I mean their own good.

  2. James Pollock October 31, 2016 at 6:24 pm #

    Hmmm. Personally, I’ve never been warned by any law enforcement about unwrapped candy. Local TV news, on the other hand…

    (I’m also old enough to remember the Tyloenol poisonings.)

  3. James Pollock October 31, 2016 at 7:22 pm #

    The only thing police are actually QUOTED in that story was:
    “’It is a crime to tamper with candy and it will result in criminal charges,’ police said in a statement. “

  4. Jess October 31, 2016 at 7:31 pm #

    I’ve broken all of these rules. My kids are still alive and I haven’t caused the death of another unsuspecting child . Weird.

  5. Beanie October 31, 2016 at 7:54 pm #

    Who actually wants to eat unwrapped candy? I always think, ew, yuck, if I come across a piece. Not that it would kill me but I like to think my sugar is sanitized.

  6. K October 31, 2016 at 7:59 pm #

    My favorite is, “Give kids an early dinner to discourage snacking.” Right. Because kids eat mounds of candy on Halloween because they’re really hungry and haven’t had enough to eat.

  7. Jennifer October 31, 2016 at 9:00 pm #

    My kids came home with apples, clementines, and homemade chocolate cupcakes! They’re very excited to bring the cupcakes to school for snack tomorrow – I never pack them sweets!

  8. Cassie October 31, 2016 at 10:39 pm #

    I think I did Halloween wrong.

    Last night 3 kids knocked at my door and I nearly gave them wrapped muesli bars…. Because my house is junk free at the moment…. But then I remembered I had half a bag of jelly beans in my fridge.

    I took the half open bag to them, apologised for eating all of the white ones, and let them take a handful each.

    I think their mum was doing halloween wrong too, because she was standing on the street with her dog, and she laughed and said “Yeh the white ones are the best”.

  9. Lele November 1, 2016 at 4:35 am #

    I checked for red dye 40 in my daughter’s candies because she is allergic to it, but aside from that….no drugs (who wastes their stash on kids or anyone else for that matter ; ) and no razor blades, big shocker. All these warnings make me laugh!

  10. Lele November 1, 2016 at 5:17 am #

    Funny thing, my kid did have dinner (not at all because of any safety tips) before she left to trick or treat with her friends (alone) until her dad caught up with her because he loves Halloween. It’s their thing together. And they both “snacked” on candy from house to house in the dark. Like they have done every year together since she was 3. She is 11 now. And they are both still alive.

  11. MichaelF November 1, 2016 at 6:05 am #

    “Daddy, can I eat a piece of candy for energy?”

    Heard that multiple times last night. Can’t fault them for the well reasoned argument.

  12. Katie G November 1, 2016 at 6:26 am #

    We broke one of the cardinal rules: we gave out homemade treats. Namely, bags of popcorn, reviving a tradition of my grandfather’s from years ago. We also do Teal Pumpkin Project and had “parachute men” toys to give out.

  13. Juluho November 1, 2016 at 7:28 am #

    As my girl friend says; drugs are expensive and no one wants to share their drugs with kids.

  14. Kathea November 1, 2016 at 8:28 am #

    So this happened last night about 10 minutes from where I live. http://www.arundelnewsnet.com/breaking/needleless-syringe-found-in-halloween-candy/article_9419c1fc-9fde-11e6-b766-a73144c1354c.html

    My immediate thoughts were:
    1. Children lie (see also: scary clowns)
    2. Children pick up random crap off the street (see also: my 3 year old trying to pick up a used band aid off the street)
    3. Parents want attention

    Added to that, why a needless syringe and only one child. If you are a sicko and want to freak out kids, wouldn’t you put a needle on it and do it to more than one kid? Plus, we call that part of town “Glen Dirty” for a reason.

    I saw this morning on FB a repost of something from another location. A picture of a Dum Dum sucker with a tiny little metal spike through the stick. Far enough down that no one would actually hurt their mouth (or eat it) but might poke a finger. Danger Will Robinson, Danger.

  15. Donna November 1, 2016 at 8:51 am #

    My kid ate candy while trick or treating. We hadn’t had time to eat dinner before we went to our first stop for the evening (martial arts studio Halloween party). I even let her keep the Rolos that are in a semi-opened package because it was the only Rolos she got and she loves Rolos.

    We were with some very helicopter friends who yelled at one of their children and threatened to take away all of her candy completely when she was caught eating a piece though. This is although the vast majority of the candy came from the martial arts Halloween party – a school that they have been attending for a couple years and know every family involved. If you really fear that people you consider friends are trying to poison your children, you have drank way too much kool-aid.

  16. SteveS November 1, 2016 at 9:17 am #

    I hadn’t noticed any warnings this year from the media or the police.

  17. Will Thomas November 1, 2016 at 9:23 am #

    I’m dubious about unwrapped candy, but only because you don’t know if the people handling it have the plague or haven’t washed their hands since last Wednesday.

  18. Workshop November 1, 2016 at 9:35 am #

    I let my kids eat candy before they got home. Didn’t inspect it. I did upwrap one piece because the four-year-old was having trouble with it.

    The worst thing my kids got was a Chick Tract. One house was giving them out with candy. I really wanted to go back and try and haggle for a copy of “Dark Dungeons” but my wife wouldn’t let me. 🙁

  19. CrazyCatLady November 1, 2016 at 9:39 am #

    I liked this one:
    • Avoid giving choking hazards such as gum, peanuts, hard candies, or small toys as treats to young children.

    Because yeah, when I lived at my former house that was THE block in town and everyone literally came out of the hills to trick or treat there….my husband (I was taking the kids around) had time to make sure that what was given to each kid was appropriate. NOT OUR JOB. That is the job of the parents…just like the one above who mentions sorting out the ones her child is allergic to.

  20. Angela November 1, 2016 at 11:21 am #

    There was a story about a screw in a candy bar here – didn’t hear anything more than “did you hear?” on that one, so I’d be willing to bet it turned out to be nothing.

    Oh, and a kid found a pill in his bag. Turned out to be a single blood pressure pill, not wrapped or disguised in any way, so I doubt some nefarious no-good creep was trying to harm the child with it.

  21. Elisabeth November 1, 2016 at 12:09 pm #

    New Rule: Any public agency that produces a list of safety tips has to provide verifiable, relevant statistics about the risks associated with not following EACH tip. for this list they’d have to report the numbers of children in their community sickened or injured by eating candy prior to their returning home from trick-or-treating, number of cases of documented “candy wrapper tampering” per capita since 1980, etc.

    if only….

  22. sexhysteria November 1, 2016 at 12:26 pm #

    Never eat fruit !!!

  23. John B. November 1, 2016 at 12:32 pm #

    Well, I had exactly 22 kids come to my door trick-or-treating. Not a bad turnout considering it’s 2016, the era of child predator phobia. Because of all the modern day paranoia surrounding trick-or-treating I make it a point to be very generous to the trick-or-treating kids who come to my door and give them FULL sized candy bars instead of the more common bagged candy. Some of the kids were pretty wowed by that!

    The costumes the kids wore were somewhat mundane. Most of the girls were ballerinas and most of the boys were super heroes. One of the youngsters was dressed as a zombie from the Walking Dead. The ages of the children ranged anywhere from about 3-years-old on up to about 12.

    It was very encouraging to see that there are kids who still trick-or treat; however, unlike when I trick-or-treated back in the mid-1960s, I think ALL of these kids had parents chaperoning them as indicated by adults waiting in the street. Something I thought was unnecessary for the older kids considering that I live in a very quiet crime free subdivision with extremely low traffic. BUT even with that said, it was still encouraging to see the kids out trick-or-treating!

  24. Reziac November 1, 2016 at 12:33 pm #

    The Tylenol poisonings … eventually it came out that this was actually someone trying to poison their spouse. There were no mass contaminations, only a little misdirection by the perp.

    Last time I paid attention, what I recall about the Great Halloween Candy Scare is that there were ZERO documented cases of tampered or booby-trapped treats… even tho some police departments had been assiduously examining and even xraying candy for a frightened public.

  25. Crystal November 1, 2016 at 12:40 pm #

    Has the writer of this press release even BEEN around a child? Like the biggest meal ever would keep a kid from eating a piece of candy while out walking on Halloween!

  26. HotInLa November 1, 2016 at 1:48 pm #

    If my kid wants to eat the apple as opposed to a piece of candy, you can bet your ass I’m gonna let her.
    I agree with Beanie. We always ToT on a hayride, so any unwrapped candy is full of hay & dirt. Nobody’s eating that.

  27. Paul November 1, 2016 at 1:50 pm #

    I was pleasantly surprised to hear you on Curtis and Kuby talking about this and other extreme warnings to parents.

  28. James Pollock November 1, 2016 at 2:27 pm #

    “The Tylenol poisonings … eventually it came out that this was actually someone trying to poison their spouse. There were no mass contaminations, only a little misdirection by the perp.”

    Several people were killed, and there were copycats. That’s more than “a little misdirection”, especially if you were one of them.

    Wikipedia says no one was ever charged over the initial incident.

  29. James Pollock November 1, 2016 at 2:32 pm #

    “Has the writer of this press release even BEEN around a child? Like the biggest meal ever would keep a kid from eating a piece of candy while out walking on Halloween!”

    My offspring unit never ate any of the candy collected while trick-or-treating. Half of it, she never ate, ever… it just sat in a bucket until it got stale. Christmas and Easter candy, too. Total opposite of me as a child.

  30. that mum November 1, 2016 at 2:40 pm #

    My kids were consuming mass quantities of their candy last night—I did not check it and they were eating as they continued to trick or treat. I was too. We go to the down town/mall first early. Then hit the street. I go with them cause I have fun too. Plus often I get candy too, and they give me the stuff they don’t like. I am happy my oldest does not like peanut m+ms so I get them. 

    Best treat last night? One of the dads in the neighbourhood had a special treat for the parents, he handed me a shot class of scotch—it was good stuff.

    They wanted to stay out later and we were going to the fireworks (I think fireworks on Halloween is a Canadian thing?) so I told them when to be home, made sure they had a flashlight cause it was dark and let them hang with their friends. They were so happy to be able to walk home in the dark from their friends house. It ‘s just around the corner but Im pretty sure a lot of kids don’t get to do that.

    I’ve decided next year I am going as a helicopter mum, cause that’s a scary thing to me!

  31. that mum November 1, 2016 at 2:43 pm #

    Oh and there was a news story on the radio this morning about needles being found in Halloween candy somewhere back east (I think Ontario) also a report form Halifax. 10 to 1 it was the parent who did it and the retraction will never be reported.

    There was a story a few years ago like that that and it turned out someone did it for the social media attention.

  32. lollipoplover November 1, 2016 at 3:10 pm #

    “Never eat fruit or other unwrapped items.”

    Because bobbing for apples is the new Russian Roulette.

    We gave out doughnuts (fresh from a local awesome shop) as most of the kids in our ‘hood were already at my house. They had to eat them from a noose tied to a branch from a tree (we made them climb it to string their own with twine). Adults cheered them to eat faster to win the prize, parents pooled the spare dollars in our pockets.
    A petite little girl won this year, breaking the male-only winning streak. She stored her bites in her cheeks like a chipmunk…brilliant strategy that paid off.

    If you every wonder WHY anxiety is rampant in young children, read one of these lists of warnings.
    Fruit is our friend. Candy is dandy. Except Almond Joys. They suck.

  33. Jetsanna November 1, 2016 at 4:03 pm #

    I personally draw the line at candy that I have seen being gnawed on by a wild animal.

  34. Jetsanna November 1, 2016 at 4:09 pm #

    Honestly, this town is very free-range. One of the moms at my house last night never even noticed that one of her children hadn’t come back to the house after trick or treating. Until another mom asked where Edison was. We meet here, the kids go out by themselves, we drink. It’s a fun night.

  35. CLamb November 1, 2016 at 5:01 pm #

    So glad to know this. I never dreamed I was putting my tot in danger by insisting that she unwrap the cellophane from the lolly before eating it. Manufacturers should print a big bold warning (like on the mattress tags) saying “Do not remove” on the wrappers.

  36. Sarah FW November 1, 2016 at 5:32 pm #

    I agree this is more of a media issue than a police issue. If the police are questioned by the media, they will of course reply on the side of caution to cover themselves legally – but did the media really have to ask?

    I always hand out homemade chocolate chip cookies, and most of them get eaten before they get to the next house. They know where to find me if they get sick from my cookies. So far, none have.

  37. Katie November 1, 2016 at 5:56 pm #

    Actually my Halloween experience this year was quite positive. Seems like things are getting better not worse. Didn’t hear anything about poisoned candy, although I don’t watch the news because it is garbage and usually hours behind twitter.

    When we went trick or treating people were telling us that last year they only had one, even zero trick or treaters. This year there were at least several individual families, plus a large group of kids/parents. I do think it was a little weird about the massive group and wonder if this is one of those paranoia things, but at least they were trick or treating, not doing some stupid trunk or treat, hiding out in their stupid SUVs with a bunch of people they already know, because as we all know it’s the stranger in the bushes who is going to get you and turn you into a vampire.

    As for going with kids, it isn’t always a helicopter thing. Some of us just enjoy going around, meeting neighbors, reliving Halloween, and seeing our kids have fun. I’ll go as long as my kids will let me and don’t consider me an embarrassing.

  38. Mark of Melbourne November 1, 2016 at 6:54 pm #

    Here in Australia I took my 10 year-old daughter and her friend out trick or treating. it grows bigger every year here. They both dressed as zombie brides. We had fun, met lots of other parents/kids, saw great costumes, met nice people, got lots of lollies (we don’t call them candy over here) some unwrapped, even handed out by people with bare hands, possibly not even washed (OMG!), we stayed out late, till it got dark and dangerous. Sometimes I went with them, sometimes I let them approach strangers homes on their home while I waited back out of sight. We got homemade treats, wrapped and unwrapped lollies, and even at one home where they apologised profusely for running out of lollies, they gave the girls… teabags, English Breakfast no less. Which my daughter loved. The teabags were open and unwrapped. This morning my daughter got up, made a cup of tea with breakfast and used the teabag. I’m glad to report she is alive and well and most importantly she had another FUN night, without a care in the world. Please tell the Gloucester Township Police to go stand in the corner until they cheer up and stop being doom and gloom merchants!

  39. Momof8 November 1, 2016 at 7:34 pm #

    The real question is this: How many children were given unwrapped candy by registered sex offenders on Halloween? Of those, how many had poisoned razor blades?

  40. lsl November 1, 2016 at 8:09 pm #

    There are two that really bug me: “Never eat fruit” and “Give your children an early meal.” I find it hard to believe that there are actually people discouraging eating fruit. And people go Trick-or-Treating way too early. People can eat at their normal time and then go Trick-or-Treating.

  41. Warren November 1, 2016 at 8:22 pm #

    Miss the elderly couple that used to live near us. She gave the kids awesome homemade baking and he gave out beer and wine to the adults.

  42. bmommyx2 November 1, 2016 at 8:30 pm #

    come to think of it, I haven’t heard or read any warnings this year or even last about unwrapped candy. I remember hospitals offering to xray candy too, but I don’t even know if they do this. One house ran out of candy & told my kids if it was ok with parents they could give them a cupcake. I considered saying yes, but my 5 & 10 yr old would have made such a mess we declined but not for the fear of poison issue

  43. lollipoplover November 1, 2016 at 8:58 pm #

    Today is another holiday- November 1st is national Eat Your Children’s Halloween Candy While They Are In School Day. I have taken a thorough inventory of my children’s Halloween candy, snacks, and treats this year and I have to commend my neighbors…especially the house that gave out $1 bills when some punk stole all of their candy. Not necessary, but well played. I’ve eaten a ridiculous amount at chocolate at this point and need an intervention. Seriously, Take5 candy bars? I have zero willpower and will take them all. My kids are more strategic. They ate snack bags along the way (who gives out Doritos? The teens loved that) and drank SODA as one house gave out soft drinks. Again, well played.

    The only reason to “inspect” Halloween candy is to pick what you want to steal from them.

  44. Rachael November 2, 2016 at 12:21 am #

    Yup, my kids are doomed! I totally let them dig into it without inspection. The only sad thing that we found on Halloween was that only three other groups were out in our area and our neighbors gave handfuls of candy because they hadn’t had many trick or treaters.

  45. JulieH November 2, 2016 at 8:12 am #

    This is making the Fort Wayne, Indiana news since it isn’t all that far away –

    Has anyone seen details discounting this report? I couldn’t find any.

  46. MS November 2, 2016 at 8:24 am #

    This is from Monroe, MI. Im wondering how true this is.
    Needles and tacks seem so obvious it’s almost as if someone is trying to prove a point.

  47. Esther November 2, 2016 at 10:42 am #

    Note from Germany:
    Wrapped candies can be quite ugly! Last year, my kids got on Halloween this stuff at one particular home:
    This year, they did not stop at that place again.
    So, no need to put poison into candies.

  48. Havva November 2, 2016 at 11:37 am #

    @John B,
    You didn’t happen to see a tiny pink fairy with a miniature lantern hanging around her neck? My daughter came home with a full size Hershey’s bar and a full size Twix! My husband was hanging back while she ran up to houses so we have no idea who gave her full size candy bars. I’m sure the chances are low that we actually live in the same neighborhood. But that was awesome (and she even shared). It totally made it worth letting her get off the beaten path on trick or treating. I’m sure you made some people’s evening way more awesome. It certainly made ours more awesome.

  49. Emily November 2, 2016 at 3:27 pm #

    >>There are two that really bug me: “Never eat fruit” and “Give your children an early meal.” I find it hard to believe that there are actually people discouraging eating fruit. And people go Trick-or-Treating way too early. People can eat at their normal time and then go Trick-or-Treating<<

    They mean "don't eat fruit that you got from trick-or-treating," but I don't agree with that advice because, as I've said before, it'd be incredibly difficult to imperceptibly implant razor blades in an apple without cutting oneself, and even more difficult to repeat this process for an entire Halloween's worth of apples, if you're giving out apples…….and, the same goes for poison in Pixie Sticks, needles in chocolate bars, and so on, and so forth. So, an apple (or whatever item) in a child's Halloween bag that looks okay, probably is. As for the "early dinner" advice, I think that makes sense–trick-or-treating generally starts around the time it gets dark. Around here, in Ontario, sunset on Halloween night this year was at 6:09 p.m., which is around dinner time for a lot of people. So, if the plan is to get the kids out trick-or-treating when it's dark, but get them back home before it's too late, so they can still get a decent night's sleep, then an early dinner probably would be a good idea.

  50. John B. November 2, 2016 at 5:09 pm #


    Actually Havva, the full sized candy bars I was handing out were the Heath bar AND Hershey bars! I basically alternated between the two. But it was the cookies & cream version of the Hershey bar, and yes, I think I did see a tiny pink fairy come to my door but I can’t remember if she had a miniature lantern hanging around her neck. Do you happen to live in a subdivision by the name of “Morris Estates”?

  51. Jill November 2, 2016 at 6:32 pm #

    And surprise! Guess what happened in Gloucester Twp., NJ, after the police warned about candy-tampering? This:

  52. Jill November 2, 2016 at 6:36 pm #

    In Gloucester Twp., NJ, where the police warned about candy-tampering, lo and behold! Somebody tampered with Halloween candy. His own Halloween candy.

  53. Melina November 3, 2016 at 10:45 am #

    I’m waiting to see the results of this, but after this one report, there’s now a ‘rash’ of reports about the area.

  54. John B. November 3, 2016 at 12:24 pm #

    Quote from story:

    “Township police responded Sunday to the Blackwood home of Robert Ledrew, 37, after he reported he found four sewing needles in separate pieces of candy after trick-or-treating.”


    You mean a 37-year-old man went trick-or-treating?? That’s pretty creepy and odd within itself!

  55. John B. November 3, 2016 at 12:33 pm #


    More than likely that story will turn out to be a hoax or a prank. Last year there was a bunch of stories of pins in Halloween candy but most of the news outlets that printed these type of stories and that they were under investigation did not print a follow-up story. SOME of the news outlets, however, did print a follow-up and reported that the investigation discovered it was a prank.

  56. that mum November 3, 2016 at 12:55 pm #


    already a retraction as a girl placed needles in her own Halloween candy. They don’t say her age but if she is over 12, in Canada she could have been charged with mischief.

    The article is pretty sad, after it was announced needles were found, a lot of parents just threw away all the candy– poor kids, I would have been devastated!

    There was another warning on my local facebook group yesterday about a particular candy that made a kid sick, no none was taking it seriously though as really, a lot of kids are sick after Halloween form consuming mass quantities of sugar and staying up late.

    OH NO my youngest was super cranky on Nov 1st– maybe she was drugged! …..

  57. John B. November 3, 2016 at 6:00 pm #

    @that mum:

    The article you provided the link for did not say who wrote it, just that it was from CBC News. But the article does mention Joel Best and mentioned that Mr. Best says this about Halloween candy tampering:

    “Joel Best, the world’s leading (and possibly only) authority on poisoned candy says the vast majority of Halloween candy tampering reports are hoaxes.”

    Now this was NOT a direct quote from him, but just described what he says about Halloween candy tampering. But then a direct quote from him in this article says:

    “‘I can’t find any evidence that any child has been killed or seriously hurt by a contaminated treat picked up in the course of trick-or-treating,” he said'”

    Perhaps I’m picking the fly shit out of the pepper here but “the vast majority” and “I can’t find any evidence” are two entirely different statements. The first quote above implies there are a few, albeit a very few, cases where Halloween candy tampering reports are legitimate. Of course, this is assuming that the very few Halloween candy tampering reports that are not hoaxes were done by strangers. If that is the case, it is not gonna relieve one iota of anxiety from parents who would be convinced that there child will be that kid to draw that rare but unlucky card. You know, classic “worst-first” thinking.

    But the direct quote from Mr. Best when he says “I can’t find any evidence that any child has been killed or seriously hurt by a contaminated treat picked up in the course of trick-or-treating” would imply that it NEVER NEVER has happened…..NEVER EVER! This would go a long ways in relieving anxiety parents may have about allowing their children to collect Halloween candy from strangers.

    Therefore, in that first instance, I don’t think the article accurately described what Mr. Best truly said about Halloween candy tampering because it somewhat contradicts his quote. It’s like they still wanted to hang on to the possibility of kids hurting themselves while eating Halloween candy collected from strangers. But the DIRECT quote from him when he implied that it NEVER has happened might be an indication that it NEVER will happen. Of course, it still could happen but the fact that it NEVER has happened definitely indicates there is a possibility that it never will happen!