The defense lawyer for one of the occupiers who had a standoff with police at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon has said that the man failed his drug test because of a bagel.
A May urinalysis test for Jason Blomgren came back positive for morphine use, leading federal supervision officers to express concerns that the former occupier was using opiates, according to The Oregonian.
Blomgren previously pled guilty to conspiring to impede federal employees from carrying out their work through intimidation, threat or force, but has been out of police custody for more than a year.
Blomgren had been subpoenaed to testify against occupation leader Ammon Bundy, but was not called as a witness after all.
Robert W. Rainwater, Blomgren's defense lawyer, argued that his client was not using drugs, but simply ate a bagel with poppy seeds on it before the test. Rainwater said that poppy seeds couldn't be ruled out as a source of morphine in the test.
"Therefore," said Rainwater, "it is our position that the positive urine sample test was caused by the bagel he ate for breakfast and not an illegal controlled substance."
Investigator Nena Baker testified that she had "learned [Blomgren] eats an 'everything' bagel with poppy seeds for breakfast every morning," and that he "ate one the day of the screening."
According to Snopes, poppy seeds on bagels can in fact cause positive results on drug tests.
Opiates can be detected in a person's urine for approximately 48 hours after that person eats a bagel or other food with poppy seeds. Even one bagel can reportedly cause positive results on a drug screening.
Blomgren is expected to be sentenced to probation in August, but after he tested positive for opiates on the drug test in May, his pretrial supervision officer advised that he be taken into custody for violating his release conditions.
During a later test in July, Blomgren tested positive for opiates again along with oxycodone. He told officials that he had not had any poppy seeds that day.
"Perhaps he does need need some drug treatment," said Rainwater.
U.S. Attorney Craig Gabriel asked that a new condition be added to Blomgren's release, stipulating that he will not consume food with poppy seeds.
Blomgren said that his daily breakfast will change to fit the conditions of his release.
"I will be eating egg whites and tea from now on," he said.
"It seems reasonable to give up the everything bagel," said Rainwater. "He'll have to."