POSTED: Tuesday, March 11, 2014 - 6:14pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, March 11, 2014 - 6:57pm
Longview, Tx (KETK) — Synthetic marijuana seems to be all the rage lately; the belief is it's a legal and safe way to get high. But, experts warn, the drug is far from safe and not all types are legal.
K2, Spice, "legal marijuana","safe marijuana", these are all names and variations of a designer drug who's popularity is soaring.
Synthetic marijuana is sold at smoke shops across the country, often disguised as potpourri. It's a mixture of herbs sprayed with potent chemicals that create a high.
James Young spent three years hooked on K2, one variant of synthetic marijuana that is now banned in Texas. He says it was by far the worst thing he's ever put in his body.
As police crack down on the sale of synthetic marijuana, manufacturers continue to tweak the ingredients so they can sell it legally.
There are 154 variations of synthetic marijuana being sold today, the drug causes hallucinations, mood swings, heart attacks and even death.
Young says those taking the drug as a safe alternative to marijuana are in for a jarring reality.
"The high lasts ten..15 (minutes) max..maybe and then you're right back at it because you want it so bad..it's bad stuff."
James' wife Shawn says she had enough of watching her husband trapped inside the dangerous addiction, so she gave him a choice: his family or the K2.
" I don't think it would've gotten to the point where I would've had to leave.. I think I would've buried my husband first."
James says Shawn's ultimatum saved his life.
" I think I'd rather have my family to be honest with you..and my life."