Wednesday, September 19, 2018
Public safety

‘Better than K-2’: Polk Sheriff says jail inmates use roach motels and bug spray to get high

What doesn’t kill you might make you stronger, but what does kill roaches will get you higher, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said Tuesday.

"They’re spraying this stuff on paper and either smoking it or eating it in the county jail," he said. "Normal people can’t understand this."

Polk County’s top lawman made the stunningly disturbing announcement during a news conference about a prison scam in which K-2 synthetic cannabinoid was being smuggled into Polk County’s Frostproof jail.

The Sheriff’s Office charged eight people in the smuggling ring. Judd said an investigation found that K-2 was being sprayed onto paper, then dried and disguised as legal correspondence, personal messages and bible verses. The drug-infused papers were then mailed to inmates or brought in during personal meetings at the jail.

The show was stolen, however, when Judd — not one to shy away from props — reached beneath his podium, only to emerge double-fisting poisonous products: A can of Raid in one hand, a box of roach motels in the other.

"Some of the things that are most popular, and they really like this better than the K-2," Judd said about six minutes into the news conference, "is Raid and roach motel."

Judd said inmates have taken to placing roach motels in plastic bags with paper, sealing them, shaking it up and leaving it in the sun for the chemicals to react. When the chemicals get infused on the paper, they eat or smoke it.

The bug spray epidemic poses a particular problem because it can’t be detected by drug tests, he said.

In 2014, researchers from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in Lubbock, Texas, released a study following a subject who got high on high-powered bug spray. Researchers said the compound pyrethroid, which is found in roach and wasp sprays, gave their subject a rush "similar to methamphetamine after using pyrethroid from liquid insecticide that had been heated (electrocuted) or sprayed on hot metal sheets until it crystallized."

"We’ve received information from sources in the jail that said K-2 is cool, synthetic amphetamine is cool, but what we really like is the Raid," Judd said, adding that it’s "just a new world that we’re discovering."

Looking for an alternative? Why not try cottage cheese on your paper, he said.

Daniel Figueroa IV can be reached at [email protected] Follow @danuscripts

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