- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 21, 2015

BAY ST. LOUIS, Miss. (AP) - Hancock County sheriff’s deputies are warning the public about a dangerous batch of Spice that surfaced last week, killing two of its users almost instantly and hospitalizing several others.

Sheriff Ricky Adam called Spice the “most dangerous” drug he’s ever seen because it kills quicker than any other drug.

At a news conference Monday, The Sun Herald reports (https://bit.ly/1HPjbDi) officials emphasized the dangers of Spice, described as a synthetic psychoactive compound of various chemicals and substances — many of which are unknown, untested and crudely formulated in makeshift laboratories.

“They aren’t chemists,” Adam said. “They’re just other dopers looking to make a buck. They’ll mix anything they can as long as it’s cheap and they can make a profit.”

Spice is commonly referred to as synthetic marijuana. But officials said the term in inaccurate and people should not equate the two substances.

Chief Deputy Don Bass even said he would welcome the legalization of marijuana if doing so would collapse the Spice market, but he said realistically it would likely have little effect on it.

Unlike the average marijuana user, many Spice users are seasoned drug addicts who seek out the psychoactive effects, he said.

The sheriff said evidence suggests the batch that killed 33-year-old Robert Redford and 59-year-old Ralph Waymire also led to the hospitalization of a woman on Saturday.

On Monday, Bay St. Louis police responded to a disturbance on Highway 90 involving a 24-year-old man who told officers he had been on a daily Spice binge for about seven days, Chief Mike DeNardo said.

Another Spice incident led to the hospitalization of Henry Farve earlier last week.

Adams said evidence suggests the batch is localized in the Bayside community, but he fears the drug could begin spreading to teenagers.

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Information from: The Sun Herald, https://www.sunherald.com

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