Grieving 'Benadryl Challenge' father slams TikTok for making 'billions' following son's death

Grieving 'Benadryl Challenge' father slams TikTok for making 'billions' following son's death
‘Benadryl’ keyword removed from TikTok search after deadly viral challenge

A grieving dad has spoken out after losing his son to a 'Benadryl Challenge' circulating online.

Jacob Stevens, 13, from Ohio, took part in the deadly challenge, which consisted of taking a large quantity of over-the-counter pills to experience hallucinations.

Jacob was rushed to the hospital and put on a ventilator. Sadly, he passed away six days later.

His distraught dad, Justin Stevens, has since broken his silence, calling Jacob's smartphone his "lifeline."

"They sit back and make billions and billions of dollars," he told Fox News about TikTok, despite the app insisting they have "never seen" the challenge. "And I can't even wake up and say hello to my kid anymore, you know?"

Justin added: "Any time that I ever tried to get into his phone, he would just set up the passcode or something… and he would hold to it that he was not letting me into his phone, so then I'd just take the phone."

"I believe technology today is a downfall. Whatever happened to playing with Matchbox cars in the mud pile on the side of the house all day and every day?"

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Justin urged other parents to "slow down" in the "fast-paced environment" we live in.

"Once they're gone, they're gone. It breaks my heart every day to know that there's still something out there that's going to hurt some kid."

TikTok responded to the tragedy in a statement shared with indy100: "Our deepest sympathies go out to the family. At TikTok, we strictly prohibit and remove content that promotes dangerous behaviour, with the safety of our community as a priority. We have never seen this type of content trend on our platform and have blocked searches for years to help discourage copycat behaviour.

"Our team of 40,000 safety professionals works to remove violations of our Community Guidelines, and we encourage our community to report any content or accounts they're concerned about."

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