Nearly 80 percent of teenagers say they have consumed alcohol by their senior year of high school, according to Alcohol Information, a statistics website. Substance abuse programs for youth are geared toward dissuading kids from using drugs, but underage drinking continues to be an issue.
Now, a new beverage on the market called Four Loko is putting teens in even more danger, according to ABC News. The alcoholic drink contains caffeine, which can be dangerous when consumed in high amounts. Joe and Vicki Keiran lost their son, Jason, after he had three Four Lokos and accidentally shot himself. The Keirans believe that if he were not manic from the drinks, the incident would not have occurred. The family is now suing Four Loko.
“[Jason’s friends] say he started to act crazy,” attorney Don Van Dingenen told the news source. “He pointed the gun at his head and everyone else. He said, ‘I realize I’m freaking you guys out; take the gun away from me.'”
Substance abuse programs for youth are working to deter kids from underage drinking, which can prove to be dangerous and even fatal.