New Synthetic Drug Making People Sick in Milwaukee

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by Michele McCormack

WAUWATOSA---It's been in the European club scene since 2003, but recently made its way to the United States.

It's a man made or synthetic drug, a stimulant, that's implicated in two deaths in North Dakota and now generating calls into the WI Poison Center.

"We've received a few calls where it made people very sick," David Gummin, the center's medical director tells CBS 58 News.

On the street it's called "Smiles" or C2-I.

"No question these drugs are lethal and people are not taking them seriously," said Gummin. "There are websites that walk you though the process, it's pretty explicit. We've never been in an age like this before."

This past summer the DEA launched "Operation Log Jam" the first targeted crackdown on synthethetic drugs.

Local, state and federal lawmakers have tried to keep pace banning bath salts and fake pot also known as "K-2" or "Spice."

In Wisconsin it is illegal to have or sell "Smiles" or C2-I.

And yet the lure seems too strong to resist.

YouTube is littered with cell phone documentation of so called "bad trips."

Some of the scenes are staged, others very dark and very real.

The reason why young people experiment is simple according to Gummin.

"The adolescent brain is hard wired for risk taking. When a small reward offers that glee, it's much greater than at any other age."

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