Damico & Stockstill, Attorneys at Law

State officials work to keep track of synthetic drug developments

Last month, the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals accounted it would be banning the possession, manufacture and distribution of25-I, a synthetic drug that reportedly killed an Alabama student at this year's Voodoo Festival in New Orleans. According to the agency, there has been a significant increase in synthetic drug abuse over the last two years.

In response to the problem, state lawmakers have passed legislation permitting the Department of Health and Hospitals to unilaterally ban certain synthetic drugs immediately by emergency rule. Last month's announcement was an exercise of that authority.

25-I will now be classified as a Schedule I substance along with heroin, ecstasy and LSD, and use of the drug will carry the maximum penalty under state law.

The death of the student at this year's Voodoo Festival was the first confirmed death caused by 25-I in Louisiana. According to witnesses, the student had a seizure and never regained consciousness within fifty minutes of placing only one drop of the drug in his nose. Minnesota, North Dakota, California and North Carolina have also confirmed deaths.

The problem of controlling synthetic drugs has been described by state officials as a game of wack-a-mole, as new formulations of such drugs are continually being developed and it is difficult to keep track of all the various formulations and make sure state law addresses them.

If a particular synthetic drug isn't banned by state law, those found in possession it cannot be targeted by prosecutors. For this reason, officials are continually working to expand their authority to prosecute. Currently, there is ongoing work on a bill that will work to outlaw synthetic drugs on a larger scale by singling out narcotics that "simulate emulate, or mimic" 25-I and bath salts.

Source: NOLA.com, "25-I banned after Voodoo Fest death, Legislature to move forward on anti-drug laws," Lauren McGaughy, November 9, 2012

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Need Help From An Experienced Team Of Trial Attorneys?

Use the form below to contact our attorneys directly. Contact us right now.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Our lawyers have over 50 years of combined experience and are AV-rated* under Martindale Hubbell's peer review rating system.

*CV, BV and AV are registered certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the Judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell Ratings fall into two categories - legal ability and general ethical standards.

Damico & Stockstill, Attorneys at Law

8048 One Calais Avenue | Suite A | Baton Rouge, LA 70809-3483 | Phone: 225-250-1812 | Fax: 225-769-0195 | Baton Rouge Law Office Map