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JCPenney lead notice pulled

December 15, 2007|Marc Lifsher | Times Staff Writer

The California attorney general's office said Friday that it had rescinded a legal notice of violation sent last month to a JCPenney store in Westminster in connection with unsafe amounts of lead in jewelry.

State officials had included the Penney store in a list of 20 retail stores found to have sold costume jewelry for children that exceeded state standards for lead.

In Penney's case, the company told the attorney general's office that the earrings sold at its Westminster store were intended for adults and did not contain lead that exceeded standards for adult jewelry.

Late Thursday, the office rescinded its notice of violation without agreeing or disagreeing with Penney's contention that the earrings featuring frogs, turtles and ladybugs were meant for adults, a spokesman said.

Inspectors from the California Department of Toxic Substances Control purchased about 375 items at stores selected at random around the state and found that about one-third of the items violated a state law that took effect Sept. 1.

Lead, if ingested, can cause developmental defects and serious health problems, especially in children.

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marc.lifsher@latimes.com

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