EL CAJON ASKS BUSINESSES TO STOP SELLING SPICE AND BATH SALT SYNTHETIC DRUGS

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September 19, 2012 (El Cajon) -- On September 14, the El Cajon Police Department in conjunction with Communities Against Substance Abuse (C.A.S.A.) and the Neighborhood Market Association will be delivering letters to 138 El Cajon businesses asking them to voluntarily decline selling the psychoactive drugs known as Spice and Bath Salts.

"The distribution and use of psychoactive herbal incense (most commonly marketed as “Spice”) and psychoactive Bath Salts (marketed under multiple brands) appears to be reaching epidemic proportions in the United States. These products are being disingenuously marketed and sold as if they were standard bath salts and incense whereas in fact they are not. Instead, they are being snorted, smoked and used intravenously," states a press release issued by El Cajon Police.

Bath Salts are disguised with brand names that include: Blizzard, Blue Silk, Charge, Ivory Snow, Ivory Wave, Ocean Burst, Pure Ivory, Purple Wave, Snow Leopard, Stardust, Vanilla Sky, White Dove, White Knight and White Lightning. Though the name may sound harmless, bath salts are a dangerous synthetic stimulant that carry the risk of easy overdose, hallucinations and even death.

Bath Salts are a synthetic, stimulant powder product that contains amphetamine-like chemicals, including mephedrone, which may have a high risk for overdose. Because the drug is new and some of the contents unknown, using it in any way is highly dangerous, police warn.

Between January 2011 and February 2011, there were over 250 calls to U.S. poison centers related to bath salts. This is well over the 236 calls received for all of 2010. Bath Salts are a dangerous drug whose full risks and effects are still unknown. What doctors at poison centers have reported is that Bath Salts can cause rapid heartbeat, high blood pressure, chest pains, agitation, hallucinations, extreme paranoia and delusions.

"In El Cajon, we had six documented incidents within the last 12 months," said Lt. Mark Coit. Each of these calls required hospital admittance. This does not include the numerous “unknown type” narcotic related requests for service.

El Cajon Police Chief Jim Redman received authorization to send the letters at the August 14th City Council meeting. The City Council also approved a request by Chief Redman and El Cajon City Manager Doug Williford to draft an ordinance that will make the distribution of synthetic drugs a public nuisance.