Cherokee, Wagoner County authorities join forces to fight synthetic marijuana

TAHLEQUAH, Okla - Authorities in Cherokee and Wagoner counties joined together Thursday to try and keep a potentially dangerous over-the-counter substance out of their communities.

Synthetic marijuana is sold under many different names: K2, Spice, incense. But authorities warn it's all dangerous when smoked.

"It is a huge problem with our community," said Cindy Farmer, Cherokee County Juvenile Drug Court director. "We have kids going to the ER and kids now being diagnosed with drug-induced psychosis as a result of it."

She says the illegal substance has become an epidemic in Cherokee county over the past two years. More than half of the 24 kids under her supervision admit to being users.

That is why District 27 Drug Task Force has served five search warrants at businesses accused of selling incense. But they can't do it alone.

Representatives from area police departments, sheriffs departments, the Bureau of Narcotics and OSBI gathered Thursday to discuss other steps they can take.

"We can all come together and discuss what needs to happen: items of legislation, enforcement, public awareness perhaps - and come together as a team to make sure we do all that we can to protect the public from this product," said District 27 district attorney Brian Kuester.
    
In the coming days, Farmer hopes to see some of the ideas put into action.

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