The Commerce Journal

Local News

January 21, 2013

'Robbing kids of their innocence'

Synthetic drug K2 highly addictive and deadly, expert says

COMMERCE — While the exact long-term effects of using the new synthetic drug, K2, are unknown, experts say they are harmful and potentially deadly.

“In my professional opinion, from a longitudinal standpoint, we don’t know the long-term effects,” Dr. LaVelle Hendricks, student affairs coordinator for Texas A&M University-Commerce, and an expert on the drug, said. “We don’t know how deadly it will be.”

Hendricks has presented K2 facts before the 82nd Texas Legislative session and was a speaker at the International Conference on Drugs and Addictions, held in San Jose, Costa Rica.

Although more research is needed to verify the long term effects it has on the body, recent studies has shown the drug stores itself in the fatty tissue of the body and impacts all major internal organs. And they also believe it to be linked with causing kidney and liver disease.

“I cannot overemphasize the dangers of this drug,” he said. “I am here to say it’s deadly.”

K2’s main ingredient is the chemical compound JHW-018, and is on average 20 times more potent than marijuana.

“These street chemists can change one compound in the chemical and it’s more powerful,” he said. “The potency only goes higher and higher.”

According to Hendricks, 33 percent of users are children between the ages of 12 and 15. And although it is illegal, it is being marketed to the younger crowd as a legal form of marijuana.

“They are preying on the emotions to get them on this drug,” he said. “They are robbing kids of their innocence.”

Hendricks said some of the side effects of the drug include diarrhea, vomiting, paranoia and cardiac arrest. Research has shown that student-athletes are experiencing debilitating cramps.

According to Hendricks, one of the more dangerous side effects is causing emergency rooms to take a closer look into the drug.

“One of the side effects makes it look like they’re having a seizure,” he said. “So hospitals are having to ask if they are on the drug before they can help.”

There are three stages of drug addiction. The misuse of drugs, the abuse of drugs and drug addiction/dependency.  

Hendricks said that since the new drug is so potent and addictive, just one “hit” from the drug can lead directly into the second stage of addiction.

“Just one time can lead to abuse,” he said. “Their brain starts saying ‘I’ve gotta have this stuff again.’”

Hendricks gives lectures on K2 and other harmful substances to cities and school districts across the state.

“As a professor at A&M-Commerce, anything I can do to help make people aware about this issue I will do,” he said.

For more information, or to schedule a lecture, contact Henricks at Lavelle.Hendricks@Tamuc.edu, or by calling 903.886.5632.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Zoe Peak.JPG Zoe Peak signs with Henderson State

    Most high school athletes are passionate about the sports they play, but few demonstrate the dedication of swimmers like Commerce High School senior Zoe Peak.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Holocaust-Poster-2014-180x180.jpg Holocaust survivors to speak at A&M-Commerce

    Texas A&M University-Commerce students and community members will have a unique opportunity to hear firsthand from three Holocaust survivors their individual experiences, an opportunity that is becoming rarer by the day.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • DavidBrown.jpg Dallas Police Chief to speak at A&M-Commerce

    Dallas Police Chief David Brown will be on the Texas A&M University-Commerce campus on April 25 to give a speech in the Traditions Room of the Rayburn Student Center.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • University to host Korean Consul-General

    Texas A&M University-Commerce will host a distinguished international politician today as former ambassador and Consul-General of the Republic of Korea Suk-Bum Park visits the campus.

    April 15, 2014

  • CR 1081 Damage 2.jpg Storm damages Hunt County

    Although Commerce was not struck by the series of tornadoes that occurred on April 3, it bore much of the impact of the severe weather caused by the storm cell. 

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Food pantry assists the ‘working poor’

    When Bread of Life Church of the Nazarene took over a monthly food pantry from Word of Life Church in Commerce, Pastor Jan Wilton told members of the Commerce Lions Club she felt a need to help the Commerce community.

    April 9, 2014

  • CR 1081 Damage 2.jpg Tornado bigger than first thought

    Additional details were released Monday about the size and intensity of last week’s tornado which struck northern Hunt County.

    April 8, 2014 2 Photos

  • Drumming up some fun

    Have you ever wondered what it takes to be part of a drum line at a university?

    April 3, 2014

  • Teachers honored at Commerce board meeting

    The Commerce ISD Board of Trustees held open session on March 20 to recognize the achievements of the Commerce ISD Campus Teachers of the Year, as well as discuss the potential offering of non-core classes to students not enrolled in the district.

    April 1, 2014

  • Environmental project to beautify park

    As the drought continues in Texas, water conservation is a hot topic.

    March 31, 2014

Featured Ads

Poll

What should be new A&M-C women's basketball coach Jason Burton's goals for the 2014-15 season?

Winning 10 games
Winning and LSC tournament game
His focus should be on recruiting/building the team, rather than immediate success
     View Results
Must Read
Facebook
AP Video
Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide