A local 16-year-old boy suffered a seizure after combining his medications with synthetic marijuana often called “K2 incense.” A woman in Kentucky high on “Plant Food” hallucinated that her two-year-old son was a demon, knocked him unconscious with a folding chair and then threw him onto the passing lane of a major highway. In Louisiana, a man seeing visions when using Plant Food opened a skinning knife and repeatedly slit his face and stomach, but he survived.
Here in Winona, addiction experts and law enforcement officials are worried that soon, the dramatic rise in synthetic drug use might claim the life of a young person, watching as local emergency rooms treat an average of six synthetic drug overdose cases a week, anxiously awaiting the July 1 date when many of the dangerous substances will officially become illegal. The legislation making the drugs known as plant food, bath salts, K2 incense and a list of other compounds will provide tools for law enforcement officials to help address the growing problems here in Winona. But with the new class of drugs marketed as plant food, bath salts, and incense widely available on the Internet, crossing the July 1 date off the calendar won’t make the problem go away.