Both state and federal legislatures have discussed bills recently that attempt to cut down on the availability of synthetic drugs. Last year, the Iowa Legislature made drugs such as K2 and “bath salts” illegal. Recently, cities across Iowa have seen more and more adults and children being sent to the hospital and even dying after using such drugs. Knoxville Police Chief Dan Losada tells KNIA/KRLS News that he hasn’t seen the issue too prevalent in Knoxville. He notes that the Mid-Iowa Narcotics Task Force has dealt a lot with such synthetic drugs recently, and the dangers are real. He says that one of the biggest issues is that the makers of such drugs will alter the formula just slightly to make an illegal synthetic drug legal. Losada says that more recent drafts of legislation dealing with the issues try to fix that by being broader overall.
Pella Police Chief Robert Bokinski tells KNIA/KRLS News that there are many misconceptions in the public about the synthetic drugs. He says that although the drugs are called synthetic cannabinoids, they often have very little to do with marijuana. Bokinski adds that the safety of synthetic drugs is questionable at best. Often the divide between two drugs right next to each other chemically can be vast as far as effects, and that while he has never seen someone overdose on marijuana, he has seen cases with the synthetic alternatives. Chief Bokinski says that the drugs haven’t been a problem here as far as he has seen.