Pocahontas pushes for Synthetic Pot Ban

By Amanda Hanson  - bio | email feedback

POCAHONTAS, AR (KAIT) - Police in Randolph County say they are seeing an increase in the use of a potent synthetic pot call K2.  It's a new unregulated herbal substance that is sprayed with a synthetic cannabis like product. "It's some kind of incense that they're buying and inhaling it.  It has the effects that you would with marijuana and maybe a little harsher," says Randolph County Judge David Jansen.

In Randolph County, they are calling it "Voodoo Spice."It's not a tobacco product. They're saying it's a incense so I guess a 10 year old can go in there and buy it because there's no law that says you can't buy incense," says Jansen.

Employees with the tobacco stores around Pocahontas say they are even having a hard time keeping it on the shelf.  Since early February, there have been questions from physicians about the health risk of "K2."  Side effects include elevated blood pressure, numbness and tingling, hallucinations, and in some cases even tremors and seizures.

The Arkansas Department of Health has issued a health advisory, and the scariest part is the herb is not detected in a drug screen.  Jansen says, "They're out there driving and hallucinating or weaving or whatever and law enforcement pulls them over they don't smell alcohol there's no law out there for them and if they drug test them it's not going to show up."

"Our drug testing dogs or our drug testing kit we just don't have the technology up to this point that we need to detour this type of activity," says Randolph County Sheriff Gary Tribble.

Janson say he has already taken steps to address the problem, "We are waiting from our attorney general to see if we can legally pass an ordinance to ban this in Randolph County."

"We're trying to keep our community save and as it is now it's making it difficult for us to do that," says

Janson says it needs to go to the state Legislature to put a law in place, but they will have to wait until next year when the Congress reconvenes.

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