INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill clarified the state’s law regarding the use of cannabidiol (CBD) oil that has led to confusion.
Hill told CBS4's Matt Smith that CBD oil is illegal to sell or possess in Indiana, with the only exception being people with epilepsy conditions specifically outlined in legislation.
"CBD is a derivative of the marijuana plant, and by definition is still marijuana, and by definition is still a schedule 1 drug which is still unlawful under the current state of the law," Hill told Smith.
Now, families are wondering not only how they will get the drug, but what will happen if they're caught using it.
"We're gonna have you arrested. Is that a possibility because I'm trying to keep my daughter alive. That's the extreme we're talking about. We're not talking about just a supplement. We're not talking about just a vitamin. We're talking about a matter of life and death," said mother, Jess Hooker.
Jess Hooker’s daughter suffers from epilepsy. Although her daughter is on the state's legal registry, she says Attorney General Curtis Hill's declaration that it's illegal to sell or possess CBD oil in Indiana will impact thousands of patients who have reported improved symptoms from the drug.
"It's just infuriating that he would say this. He knows, he knows the benefits, he's an educated man he knows the benefits. He knows what he could do," Hooker said.
And for people who sell CBD oil, like Happy Daze Smoke Shop in Indianapolis, this announcement is a game changer for their business.
"It would hurt our business a lot. It's probably 15% of our sales. We pulled everything off the shelves until we speak with our lawyer tomorrow is what we did," co-owner, Jeffrey Shelton said.
But Chuck Bryson who's a CBD oil ambassador through a company called Zilis says he won't back down.
"I'll continue to sell this product in one way, shape, or form whether I'm no longer to sell it directly through the website you can order the product directly from out the state," Bryson said.
As for AG Hill, this is what Jess Hooker would say to his face if she had the chance.
“Don't make a rash decision based on political gain. Don't follow the party. Listen to the stories of Hoosiers and how this benefits us and be our hero. Be what we need in the state of Indiana," Hooker said.
In response to Hill's opinion, Rep. Jim Lucas says he will introduce legislation to legalize CBD oil.