Cookie Crazies

Tampering with a symbol

The Girl Scout cookie is more than a popular treat. Over nearly a half-century it has become not just an annual door-to-door institution but also a symbol of the wholesome qualities of American childhood. A perfect target, in short, for twisted pranksters.

In McDonough, Ga., nine-year-old Sean Green pierced his gums with an inch-long sewing needle buried in one of the Girl Scouts' Caramel Delights. A Chatham, Va., girl punctured her lip when she bit into a cookie containing a pin. At least 17 states, ranging from Maine to California, filed more than 80 reports of cookies contaminated...

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