Deputy, Doctor Warn "Bath Salts" Drug Seriously Addictive, Dangerous

The bath salts drug is readily available on many store shelves and can be sold legally to anyone. Brittany Gunter has exclusive surveillance video lawmen say shows just how dangerous this drug can be.

Officials say the surveillance video shows 36 year old Shawn Walker of Washington outside of the White Post convenience store in Bath. A wide-shot shows Walker punching through windows and knocking over a newspaper stand. Photos taken by the owner show the damage- glass broken, blood everywhere. The camera continues to record, showing Walker visibly hysterical and hallucinating. He eventually punches that camera out of the way.

Deputies with the Beaufort County sheriff's office arrived soon after and Walker was arrested. Before he went to jail, he was taken to the hospital because of cuts all over his arms and hands.

So what would prompt something like this? Deputies say it happened because Walker wasn't in his right mind. They say he was high on bath salts.

"It's a synthetic amphetamine. It's a stimulant called mephedrone. It was created back in china in 1929 and recently became popular back in 2007," said Lt. Russell Davenport of the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office.

It's become popular because it's legal in many states and not very expensive. Officials say it comes from countries overseas including china, the UK and India.

Anyone can walk into many convenience stores and tobacco shops in the east and buy these drugs for $20 to $40 dollars per package.

Businesses can sell the drug because the packaging labels it as "bath salts" or "insect repellent." also on the packaging there are warnings like "not for human consumption," but officials say inside the packages is not what you would think of as bath salts or insect repellent. It's actually a very dangerous and highly addictive drug.

"The addiction is twice as worse as meth," said Davenport
Davenport is a narcotics detective with the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office, and says they have been getting 2-3 calls a week about someone using "bath salts,"and often that person is hallucinating.

"We've had a person hide from under the counter at the magistrate's office and say they are hiding from the demons that are coming out of the walls hallucinating," said Davenport.

William Meggs is an emergency room doctor at Pitt County Memorial Hospital and he says over the past 6 months they've seen a huge increase in the amount of people brought into the emergency room on this drug.

"We've had an explosion of cases in our emergency department," said Dr. Meggs. We've seen people who have had to go on life support, we have such an individual in our medical intensive care unit right now."

He says the effects are not only physical but psychological as well.

"A number of these individuals had to be admitted to the psychiatric unit due to the toxic effects of this drug on their brains," said Dr. Meggs.

It's a high that can leave lasting effects. Officials hope when people watch the video attached to this story (click the video link above to watch) they see how the drug can alter their brain and their lives possibly forever, and they hope people will not buy it.

A law has been passed to make it illegal to sell the drug mephedrone in the United States. That law goes into effect June 1st.

While stores will no longer be able to sell the drug legally, officers say unfortunately they don't think that is going to stop people from finding it and taking it.

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  • by Rot Man Location: washington on Aug 22, 2011 at 10:43 AM
    Well I use to live in Washington. First of all... that stuff is pure garbage. The sketchy people nowadays lace marijuana with that poison. Its the filth that lurks that town. Soon ill avenge . The corrupt must stopped at ANY COST. Streets need to be clean. You are looking at the Dark Knight.
  • by Lynn Location: wilson on May 28, 2011 at 06:27 AM
    As a mother of a child that decided to try the bath salts I highly warn anyone of this so called legal drug. I have dealt with another family member that used cocaine and other drugs and never in my life seen what I saw with my son.. he actually was terrified someone is out to get him including his parents. He has went through detoxic and now is facing the after affects of this drug. Not sure now if it is permenant damage or not. MY heart breaks to see my child like this. If it is permenant than he will not have much of a normal life as far as social. PLEASE DO NOT EVEN TRY THIS ONCE. PEOPLE ARE KILLING THEMSELVES AND OTHERS DUE TO THIS DRUG. THE SO CALLED HIGH IS NOT WORTH THE PARANOID SIDE EFFECTS.
  • by Washington Native Location: Washington on May 8, 2011 at 08:33 AM
    it's funny, mr. davenports job would be gone if they would just legalize and tax marijuana. we spend so much money stopping it, the legal stuff that they are comming out with is worse that the actual drug they are trying to immitate.
  • by FYI Location: Greenville on May 2, 2011 at 10:39 AM
    SESSION LAW 2011-12, SENATE BILL 7 was signed by Beverly Perdue on March 25 and goes into effect on June 1. These drugs will be a Schedule I controlled substance.
  • by Not Banned Location: Washington on May 1, 2011 at 07:34 PM
    Not banned in February. There is a bill sponsored to ban this chemical in North Carolina but there are a few more hurdles to jump before it becomes law. Nothing misleading about the article if you check the facts outside of these posts.
  • by War On Drugs on Apr 30, 2011 at 11:19 PM
    If we ban these drugs, the users will find another way to get it...or switch to another drug. Snorting Drain-o can give you a great buzz for a few seconds...Try it! (but pick out your plot & headstone first)
  • by It's already banned on Apr 30, 2011 at 12:37 PM
    This article is very misleading. Mephedrone was already banned in February in North Carolina. Most bath salts sold here were not actually Mephedrone, but more commonly MDPV. That, too, is illegal now. What's the bath salts now? Your guess is as good as mine....
  • by lorri Location: bath on Apr 29, 2011 at 09:28 PM
    I know several people who have become seriously addicted to "bath salt". Several students at BCCC are on it as it is sold at the #7 store. It has taken its toll on their bodies, skin and bones. The hallucinations are terrible also. They need to ban it. Its very addicting, worse than crack.
  • by KC Location: Washington on Apr 29, 2011 at 12:58 PM
    Thank you for airing this story. I also have seen first hand what this can do to is life altering and they truly believe what they hear and see.....ghosts, people not there....paranoia big time..Making it illegal may not make it inaccessable to some people but hopefully to most...TO THOSE WHO ARE THINKING OF TRYING IT...PLEASE THINK AGAIN AND AGAIN...AND NOT TRY..YOUR LIFE MAY TRULY DEPEND ON YOUR MOMENTARY DECISION.
  • by Bubba Location: Green Co. on Apr 29, 2011 at 08:48 AM
    Ban it? Hmmmmm.. worked with the war on drugs right? Use ur brain
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