POSTED: Monday, March 10, 2014 - 9:50am
UPDATED: Monday, March 10, 2014 - 3:39pm
Longview, TX — Synthetic marijuana almost killed James Young.
“I almost shot myself because I had lost my mind from it,” the 31-year-old Kilgore resident said Friday afternoon at the home he shares with his wife, Shawn Young. “When you damn near commit suicide and you don’t even know why, that pretty much will put you in your place.”
After three years of daily use, James Young stopped using the substance in October because he found himself bedridden and rapidly succumbing to physical ailments — inability to sleep, constant vomiting, loss of appetite, violent mood swings, irritability, rapid heartbeat, chills, constant fever, paranoia and memory loss — that he said were caused by smoking the substance commonly packaged and sold as potpourri.
His story is among the many that have led city and county officials to discuss how to eradicate synthetic marijuana while fighting the uphill battle of increasing usage.
“Use is up. We see people smoking it, and we see the results of it,” Longview police spokeswoman Kristie Brian said. “Some of them just lose their minds, and not all of them fully recover. We are getting more and more calls about people doing strange things.”
Five people ages 19 to 49 were admitted to Good Shepherd Medical Center on Thursday night after using synthetic marijuana, Brian said.
Read more  from the Longview News-Journal.