Despite the fact that the state of Missouri has placed a ban on synthetic marijuana products, teens apparently still have access to them, as they continue to be sold at certain independently-owned gas stations and convenience stores.
Statistics from the National Institute on Drug Abuse indicated that nearly one in nine high school seniors have gotten high on the herb-based product, which mimics the effect of pot.
Synthetic marijuana is made from a mix of dead plants, flowers, and chemicals. These may be smoked in a pipe, mixed with marijuana, or snorted. While users experience the same effects as that which can be derived from using pot, they are also more likely to experience other symptoms as well, including rapid heartbeat.
Authorities in Kansas City’s Northland area were able to seize large amounts of suspected synthetic drugs. These products carry such brand names as Mr. Happy and Purple Diesel, and are sold as “plant food,” potpourri, and bath salts.
Platte County Prosecutor Eric Zahnd shared: “We are targeting merchants who sell synthetic drugs for one simple reason: Synthetic drugs are extremely dangerous. Their effect on the human body is very unpredictable… A few years ago, it was legal to sell these designer drugs. That is no longer true.”
Zahnd shared further that three young people were hospitalized due to kidney failure, while a dozen were sickened in Casper, Wyoming, early this month. All the cases, he said, could be traced back to a batch of a certain designer drug.
Packets of synthetic marijuana are normally being sold for $20. The merchants are able to acquire these from dealers for $4, while dealers can manufacture them for less than $1.