Archive for the ‘Drugs’ Category
Country music legend Loretta Lynn knows how to step up to the mic and belt out a tune, and her songs normally tell a story of heartbreak, heartache, and every other “cry-in-your-beer” type of tale imaginable. She’s also crooned about change, especially where a woman’s rights are concerned. A great example is her song, We’ve Come A Long Way, Baby.
I’m thinking Lynn’s song title could also apply to the evolving laws in the U.S. regarding marijuana use, possession, and sales. After all, this country has come a long way since Nixon’s drug war began. A war that, in my opinion, hasn’t worked since day one. And this is especially true regarding marijuana. I say this because I was once soldier in that fight, spending countless hours trekking through thick woods, underbrush, poison oak and ivy, searching for pot growing operations. Sure, I like many investigators, was pretty darn good at finding the telltale signs and following them to plants as small as tiny shoots to nearly 20-foot tall green giants. Then, after I found what I was looking for, I’d set up surveillance on the sites and, when I had enough information and when the time was just right, I and a team of officers raided the operation(s).
In fact, the leaf pictured above is one from a rather large operation I found after seeing a man standing on the side of a country road. He was doing nothing wrong. Had nothing in his hands. Didn’t even look suspicious. But he was standing on the side of the road in an area where the nearest house was probably five miles away in either direction. Of course, I wasn’t driving a marked police car, nor did I look like a cop. So I stopped and asked if he needed a ride. He declined, saying he was walking to “the store” and that he expected his girlfriend to come by any second. To me he was a huge red flag. My intuitive radar was beeping in high gear.
So I continued on my way, but planned to come back after dark and see what I could find. I had someone drop me off near where I saw the man standing and off I went, creeping along through the woods. After two hours and a few dozen mosquito bites and cuts and scrapes from briars, I found what I was looking for, a creek. I knew growers needed a water supply, so I followed the narrow stream until I reached the “pot” of gold, a huge plot of marijuana plants.
A nighttime photo of me standing among the hundreds of marijuana plants I found that night. No, my head is not that tall. I quickly stuck the cap on top of my head so some sort of badge showed up for the evidence photo. Believe me, I totally disliked wearing a hat.
To make a long story short, I later arrested the growers, found a packaging operation on their property, along with numerous pounds of dried and drying marijuana. We go to court and the judge slaps them on the wrist and lets them go. No telling how much time, effort, manpower, technology, and money went into that one investigation alone. And there were, and still are, many of those police investigations going on today across the country.
You know, I’ve often thought I’d live to see the day when marijuana was taken off the list of illegal drugs. At the very least, I truly expected to see it reduced to a classification lower than Schedule I, the group that includes drugs such as heroin. Even cocaine is classified lower than marijuana. Why is marijuana at the top of the list? Who knows?
Well, as we all know, the will of the voting public has been heard in Colorado and Washington, with New York following at their heels. Those two states have legalized marijuana for recreational use. I expect we’ll see more states adjusting their marijuana laws in the near future.
I’m thinking pot smokers everywhere should, at the very least, think about Loretta Lynn as they fire up their newly-legal bongs, because, as her lyrics say, “Times have changed and I’m demanding satisfaction, too. We’ve come a long way, baby.”
How about you? Do you think the country is moving in the right direction? Should marijuana be made legal?
The party was a blast and you drank a little of everything in sight, including a swallow from the host’s aquarium. Sure, it was a dare, and you spit the goldfish back into the tank, but that should’ve been the first hint that you’d consumed a wee bit too much alcohol. But it wasn’t. Neither was carrying on a conversation with the coat rack and kissing your boss goodbye before stumbling outside where you relieved yourself into a bed of pansies while singing a medley of Celine Dion tunes.
You weren’t drunk. No, not you. At least that’s what your lips were saying while your brain was doing its best to tread water in a whirlpool of beer, whiskey, rum, and tequila. So you got behind the wheel of your prized VW and headed for home. Where you ended up, though, was at the police station, thanks to a few wrong turns and “misunderstandings” with dancing streetlights, mailboxes that insisted on playing chicken with your front bumper, and the row of hedges that used to be a part of the new landscaping in the front yard of the mayor’s house.
So there you sat, quietly humming Lady Gaga’s latest, while a red-faced police officer who, by the way, couldn’t be much older than your kids, fiddled with some sort of gadget while asking you questions. Too many questions, actually. And why, you wondered, did he keep looking at his watch?
Now he’s asking you to…this is ridiculous. You refuse to cooperate with his little test. What’s the worst that could happen? Well…
The scenario above may sound a bit silly, but it happens more often that you’d think. Here are the steps to conducting a breath test on a person who’s suspecting of driving under the influence of alcohol (this is after all the roadside tests have been conducted and the driver is indeed suspected of being under the influence of alcohol).
*These steps apply to the Commonwealth of Virginia. As always, procedures and laws may vary in other areas. By the way, operators/officers conducting the tests must be licensed by the Division of Forensic Sciences. Not all police officers are licensed to conduct the tests.
– The officer must observe the suspect for a minimum of 20 minutes prior to the test. This is so the officer can be certain the suspect has not burped, belched, consumed any additional alcohol, eaten, or consumed beverages of any type.
– the operator presses the enter key on the device, starting a test sequence.
– operator swipes their license through the slot on the device, which then displays their individual information – name, agency, license number, etc.
– operator swipes the suspect’s drivers license, which records their information and enters it in the appropriate lines of the final certificate of analysis. Those without a license require manual entry of information.
– auto testing sequence and purging of the machine is complete at this point. If there is a reading outside the allowable values the testing must be terminated.
– after a few self-check messages, a prompt of “Please blow until the tone stops” begins flashing on the screen.
– the prompt flashes for three minutes, or until the subject blows into the mouthpiece.
– subject blows into the mouthpiece.
– a portion of the breath is then collected into a fuel cell where it is analyzed.
– the mouthpiece is removed and the device purges and waits for the next sample.
– after a two minute wait, and watching the subject to be sure he/she hasn’t burped, etc., a new prompt displays and the operator installs a new mouthpiece.
– the prompt “please blow” appears on the display
The machine provides the data from the two tests and the result used as the official number (blood alcohol content – BAC) is the lowest of the two tests. A certificate of analysis is printed.
Next on the agenda is usually a night spent in jail. By the way, refusing to take the breath test can result in a 12-month suspension of your drivers license and, you could still be found guilty of the DUI if the officer testifies to his observations of your actions during field sobriety tests, etc.
Driving is a privilege, not a right, and everyone who is issued a license to drive (in Va.) implicitly agrees to submit to a breath test when they’re suspected of driving under the influence. No exceptions.
1. Between 90% and 98% of alcohol is oxidized in the liver.
2. Only a small amount of alcohol is excreted through perspiration, the breath, and urine – 2% – 10%
3. The body starts to eliminate alcohol the minute it enters the liver via the blood system. The rate of elimination from the body is between .015 to .018 g/210L per hour, depending, of course, on factors such as disease, drug use, and exercise. Urination and perspiration have no effect on the rate of elimination. Sex and weight also have little to do with the rate of elimination.
Is it possible that when not bombing, raping, and killing innocent people, terrorists are hard at work pruning, weeding, and planting? Have they secretly attended colleges and earned degrees in ornamental horticulture?
Well, law enforcement officials in some areas believe there’s a direct connection between terrorism and the flowering evergreen shrub Khat (pictured above).
The Texas Department of Public Safety launched a large scale investigation into the sales of Khat and its possible connection to African terrorist organizations such as al-Shabaab. They believe the sales of the chewable plant benefit and support the terrorist groups.
Khat (pronounced “cot”) is native to East Africa and nearby areas. The plant is legal to grow, possess, and ingest in many countries. However, it is illegal to possess in the U.S., Germany, and Canada. Khat produces the chemicals Cathine and Cathinone. Cathine is a Schedule IV drug, while Cathinone, which similar to some amphetamines, is classified as a schedule I drug. Schedule I drugs have no known medicinal value in the U.S. Heroin and LSD are also in the schedule I class of drugs. And, almost unbelievably, marijuana is still classified as a schedule I drug, while cocaine and methamphetamine are a step below in Schedule II.
Users of Khat chew the plant’s leaves, stems, and twigs, much like tobacco chewers use their product. Leaves are also brewed as tea, dried and sprinkled onto food, and they’re even smoked to achieve the desired result.
Khat seized by the DEA
Khat is a stimulant and the high from using it is similar to that produced by methamphetamine and cocaine.
A man prepares Khat for a night of chewing and tea drinking with friends
The effects of Khat on the body are an increase in blood pressure and pulse, a brown staining of the teeth (chewing), stomach and other gastric troubles, and like cocaine and meth use…insomnia. Users may also experience exhaustion, paranoia, hallucinations, difficulty breathing, loss of appetite, and mild to extreme hyperactivity.
Dried Khat leaves
Khat has been found in some bath salts, the synthetic drug once sold legally in many convenience stores other shops.
Bath salts are now illegal in the U.S.
Bath salts have been linked to suicide, homicide, self-inflicted injury, delusions, and child-endangerment.
Controlled substances fall under control of the federal Drug Enforcement Administration and the state police. Local police and sheriffs become involved when an incident falls under their jurisdiction – or when they are working with federal or state agencies.
Agencies and Organizations
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) enforces the controlled substances laws of the United States. The DEA investigates and prosecutes drug law violators through 226 domestic offices and through 85 international offices. Employees of the DEA include Diversion investigators, Special Agents, Chemists, and Intelligence Research Specialists.
State police regulate the dispensing, storing, and administering of all controlled substances. For example, a physician, pharmacy or researcher in Texas must obtain a Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) number to store and prescribe controlled substances. The Texas Department of Public Safety maintains drug rules for them to follow. See Texas DPS Rules.
Laws and regulations
Drug schedules came from legislation and resulted in five categories. Each category depends on the severity of abuse of the substance and its legitimate use in the medical community. These schedules include I-V. Accordingly, each schedule corresponds to an offense for possession and distribution of the substance. 21 U.S.C. United States Code Sections 801, 801a,, 802, 811, 812, 813, and 814 determine when a drug can be placed under a schedule or removed from it.
The Drug Enforcement Administration – along with the Food and Drug Administration – make decisions about changes of the various schedules and substances that fall under them.
Amendments to the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), 21 U.S.C. Food and Drugs include, among others, The Domestic Chemical Diversion and Control Act of 1993 and The Ryan Haight Online Pharmacy Consumer Protection Act of 2008.
Schedule I substances have a high potential for abuse. Drugs in this schedule include herion (diacetylmorphine), LSD (lysergic acid diethlylamide), marijuana, ecstacy (MDMA), mescaline and peyote, among other highly addictive and controlled substances.
Schedule II substances also have a high potential for abuse. Substances in this category include cocaine, Ritalin ®, opium, methadone, oxycodone, morphine, Adderall, codeine, hydrocodone, PCPC (Phencyclidine and pentobartital.
Schedule III substances lead to a lower potential for abuse than Schedule I and Schedule II substances. These substances include Katramine (a PCP replacement), Vicodin/Tylenol 3, Marinol (used during chemotherapy), anabolic steroids, and testosterone.
Schedule IV has a lower potential for abuse – in relation to drugs in Schedule III. Drugs under Schedule IV include Valium (diazepram), Klonopin (clonazepam), Xanax, Lunesta, Ambien, Phenobarbital, Tramadol, and Soma.
Schedule V substances have a low potential for abuse. They still, however, have to be dispensed for a medical purpose. These substances include Lyrica, cough medicine containing codeine, and Lomotil.
Known now as “Big Pharma”, pharmaceutical companies patent drug names that may eventually become generic (as was the case with heroin). Any of these drugs developed for legitimate purposes can be abused or sold on the street level.
Drug patents: Zyprexa (patent expired 2011), Prozac (fluoxetine) patent expired 2001
Merck & Co.
Drug patent: Ecstacy (methylenedioxymethamphetamine)
Johnson & Johnson
Drug patent: Concerta (patent expired 2011) – attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
Drug patent: Depakote (valproic acid) anticonvulsant and mood stabilizer for bipolar disorder
Drug patent: Abilify (anti-depressant and anti-psychotic)
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.
Drug patent: Copaxone (to treat multiple sclerosis)
F. Hoffman La Roche Limited
Drug patent: Pegasys (hepatitis C drug) – later the patent was revoked
Drug patent: Paxil (Paroxetine Hydrocloride) – anti-depressant
Drug patent: diacetylmorphine – trade named Heroin – for heroisch (German) heroic (English), was first marketed as a cough suppressant and morphine substitute. Heroin converts to morphine, once metabolized. But because of its high rate of addiction, heroin was eventually no longer used for its original purpose. It became a Schedule I controlled substance.
However, in Switzerland, clinics dispense free heroin to help users overcome their addition.
Profits come not only from the illegal sale of controlled substances on the street, but also from the paraphernalia associated with drug manufacturing, sale and use. These are sold mostly in head shops. However, head shop items are not necessary to process, cook, or consume controlled substances. For example, heroin users heat and inhale heroin using aluminum foil. Substances can also be heated using a household items such as a teaspoon or tablespoon.
Not as common in the United States as in Russia is the flesh eating drug nick-named Krokodile. Krokodile destroys flesh – leaving bones exposed and even leads to amputation of limbs because of its devastating effects.
Methamphetamine can be made from over-the-counter medications. Its use can be devastating – not only in a user’s appearance, but in their internal health. Users commonly end up with sores on their body and face, in addition to “meth mouth” where the teeth become brown and yellow shark teeth – or are eaten away altogether.
Molly is the drug Ecstacy, now being used with a new name.
The Kratom Craze has created another threat to substance abuse.
Writing about controlled substances requires knowing about the Drug Enforcement Agency and the role it plays in enforcement of drug laws. In addition, it helps to become familiar with state police regulation of controlled substances through drug rules. Knowing Schedules I – V and how substances can change from one Schedule to another (over time) is also required.
And despite legitimate patents for controlled substances, there will always be street level drugs that combine controlled substances or at least ones that are used contrary to their original purpose.
Rush by Kim Wozencraft
Go Ask Alice, Author Anonymous
Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Suzanne
One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest by Ken Kesey
On the Road by Jack Kerouac
Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson
* * *
Valerie Brown’s interest in law and law enforcement came from her experience with a Law Enforcement Explorers Group, in addition to a trimester law enforcement program. She continued her interest in government and law by graduating from the University of Texas with a B.A. in Government and by completing her M.A. in Legal Studies at Texas State University. She is inspired by her father who was a chief chemist at a major petrochemical company.
*Images – DEA and Wikipedia Commons public domain
Fall in the south is a welcome time of the year. It’s when searing temperatures and unbearable humidity finally give way to crisp breezes and crimson streaked sunsets. Air conditioners are switched off and windows raised. It’s a time for high school football, sweatshirts, and the harvesting of crops, such as cotton, soybeans, and tobacco. Peanut farmers also begin their harvests by digging into the soil, exposing their subterranean crops, the fruits of their summer labor. The scent of freshly turned dirt combines with the familiar fragrance of the sun-drying legumes. Together, their earthy odor fill the air. For many, this is the first formal announcement that another summer has indeed passed.
On this particular autumn night, the night that One Eye’d Joe went on a binge of smoking crack and drinking more than his fill of Mad Dog 20-20, a heavy harvest moon hung low in the night sky, casting long shadows across fields, backyards, and empty parking lots. There was a nip in the still air, and blades of grass were stiff and brittle, coated with the first frost of the season.
Deep in the folds of the city, One-Eye’d Joe was desperate. He and a friend had spent the last their combined dollars on a few crack rocks, smoked them, and were now looking to sustain the high, any way they could. And, with each man suffering from a thousand-dollar-a day habit, there were no limits on what they’d do. None.
One-Eye’s nickname came about after he’d gotten into a rather nasty fight with his brother. The older sibling, Willie, was on the losing end of the battle, so he grabbed the nearest weapon at hand to even the odds—a small stick—and attempted to gouge his brother’s face. The stick penetrated Joe’s right eye, leaving him permanently blind on that side. The injured eye eventually turned dull and milky white, a very distinguishing feature in each of Joe’s many mug shots.
A few years later, during a three-day drinking spell, One-Eyed Joe returned the favor by jabbing brother Willie in the eye with a broken bottle. Willie now has the matching milky left eye to Joe’s right. To add insult to injury, and more irony than this story can stand, the brothers had a small dog that had only one good eye. I don’t know how that happened, and I dare not try to imagine.
One-Eye’s crack-smoking best friend was a male prostitute who resided in a rat-and-roach-infested, pay-by-the-week hotel, where he performed oral sex for other men. His fee was twenty-dollars for each sex act—enough for one rock. He and One-Eye had been close friends since junior high, and had been in and out of jail and prison throughout their entire lives.
One-Eyed Joe had been locked up at least once for nearly every crime imaginable, short of murder, but his specialty was B&E—Breaking and Entering. He liked to slip into homes while the owners were away on vacation or out for the evening. He was not normally violent, and he didn’t like confrontation. As a rule, Joe was very passive, but had been known to throw a punch or two, if cornered. Together, these two thugs didn’t weigh 220 pounds, and it would surprise me if they had a full set of teeth between them. Crack smokers are not known for their good hygiene habits, and the teeth are often the first thing to go. As a team, the two thugs reminded me more of Abbott and Costello than the hardened criminals they aspired to be.
On this night, though, the two had spent every dime they had on crack, and, as usual, they craved and needed more—a lot more—and Joe was struck with an idea as to how they’d get it. He thought about a job he once worked as a truck-stop fuel attendant. Yes, the two bumbling crooks decided to rob Joe’s old place of employment. Their plan in its entirety was to wait until the fuel-desk clerk was alone, and then rob her at knife-point.
The truck stop sits just outside the south edge of the city limits, just off the main highway. It had been in business for many years under the same ownership. The proprietors of this hole-in-the-wall truckers’ haven still believed customers should never have to pump their own fuel, and that an attendant should smile and wash the customer’s windows while they waited. That particular job had been Joe’s during his three-week tenure.
The company’s old-fashioned ways were charming, but added to their vulnerability when it came to hold ups, because they simply didn’t believe in computers or high-tech security. In fact, their only telephone, a wall-mount unit, was the old-fashioned, finger-holed dial type that takes just a little too long to ring up 911.
The truck-stop’s greasy spoon restaurant served breakfast twenty-four hours a day, and advertised a different lunch and dinner special for each day of the week. This particular Thursday night was liver-and-onions night, and the aroma of fried onions and greasy, brown gravy hung in the air immediately surrounding the restaurant. At approximately 10:30 p.m., business was so slow, the night manager sent the only waitresses home early, thinking she and the cook would be able to handle things for the rest of the shift.
The desk where the truck drivers paid for their fuel was in a separate building from the restaurant. That part of the business was enjoying a better-than-average night, and the lone clerk, a older woman with big hair and gnarled and twisted arthritic fingers, was managing the workload just fine. She was well-liked by the drivers, and they normally spent a few minutes shooting the breeze with her before getting back behind the wheel.
One-by-one, both long- and short-haul truckers swung their big rigs off the highway and into the lot for refueling. While they waited for their tanks to fill, they topped off their thermoses with fresh, hot coffee and stopped in at the desk to hear the latest gossip.
At 10:45 p.m., One-Eye’s partner-in-crime drove his beat-up, faded blue Chevy Malibu past the teal Kenworth at the pumps and into the far corner of the truck-stop parking lot, just out of reach of the amber light spewing from the rows of tall sodium-vapor lights. The car reached the end of the lot and its driver turned it around to face the truck stop. He shut off the motor.
The Kenworth pulled out, and a candy-apple red Peterbilt—the last truck in the lot—sat idling at the pumps while the driver said his goodbyes to the clerk. The two criminals, still high from hours of crack smoking, watched as the driver climbed into his rig and, with a whoosh from the air brakes and a grinding of low gears, he eased the Peterbilt out onto the roadway.
From where One-Eye and his partner sat, they could see the clerk through a window, soundlessly going about her routine, tallying fuel totals and taxes. Not once did she lift her head to look into the parking lot. Had she done so, she’d have seen the two men watching her every move.
The 911 call came into the police station at 11:00 p.m. on the dot. The frantic clerk said she’d been robbed by two men, one of whom wielded a six-inch steak knife. She said she didn’t recognize either of them, but one of the two had a bad eye. She said it looked as if he was blind in the bad one, because it was white and milky-looking. When they called me out to investigate the armed robbery, I first swung by my office to pick up a photo of One-Eyed Joe. I was pretty sure that it was he whom the clerk had described. Who else could it be?
I showed the clerk the picture and she positively identified One-Eyed Joe as the robber. So I drove to his house and found a car parked in the grass near the front door. It matched the description of the get-a-way car. The hood was still warm.
I had arrested One-Eye many times in the past for his various crime sprees, and not once had he ever shown any violence, much less had a weapon of any sort. However, since the clerk said he had brandished a knife this time, I didn’t take any chances and called for back-up to meet me at the house.
Once help arrived, I knocked on the door. In a matter of seconds, the door opened and a very high Joe stared me in the face. The good eye darted from side to side, looking first to my right eye, then to my left. The white eye eerily followed suit.
He spoke first, “I guess you come after me about what we done at the truck stop.” I told him that yes, that was my reason for being there.
“I done it,” he said. “At least me and him together done it.” He pointed inside the room to where his partner sat on the linoleum floor beside a short coffee table—the only piece of furniture in the house that had not been sold or cut up for firewood. On the table top was a broken-off boom box antenna, a makeshift pipe for smoking crack, and several bits and pieces of aluminum foil—the wrappings for the crack cocaine.
The two chatterboxes wouldn’t stop talking, an effect of smoking crack, and I didn’t want any problems in court with their unending, babbling confession, so I promptly advised them of Miranda, something I’d do a few times as their high dissipated, just to be sure they understood the words and their meaning (as if they didn’t already know the drill by heart).
I handcuffed each of them and drove them back to my office for further questioning. Along the way, One-Eye explained—between tears and sobs—that he was grateful for us catching him so soon. He went on to say he was scared and worried that he would have killed someone to get the next piece of crack. He told me he had no control over his life. I believed that statement to be true. The men were so high and so desperate for the next hit, that they would’ve done anything to get it, including murder, which, they’d said, was next on their list. They’d planned to go back to the truck stop to kill the clerk and then steal the company safe.
I often wonder just how many people have come that close to death, without knowing it. How about you? Has there been a “One Eye’d Joe in your life?” Someone who’d thought of killing you, but didn’t because of a last minute intervention. Or, will you meet your “Joe” tomorrow?
“I want to kill someone and eat them!” the woman yelled out as she lunged toward a New York City police officer, attempting to bite his face. She was subdued and taken to a hospital for psychiatric evaluation.
Later, officers were called to the home of Aubrey Vails, the young man who’d ripped a door from its hinges at his parent’s home, after threatening to kill them. Police found the crazed man in the driveway, violently and repeatedly punching a car.
In Georgia, a frightened mother called the police to report that her son, Matthew Hammond, was “acting crazy,” and was walking around with a knife threatening to hurt someone. When the responding officer arrived, Hammond charged the police car and began aggressively knocking on the doors and windows, challenging the officer to a fight. He still had the knife in his hand, and, in an even more bizarre twist to the case, Hammond had feces in his mouth.
Hammond continued to challenge the officer by pulling on the door handles of the police cruiser. The officer accepted Hammond’s challenge by drawing his service weapon, aiming it at the threat. Hammond dropped the knife and was immediately arrested by the officer.
But it doesn’t end there…
Miami – A man growled at approaching police, and then screamed. I want to eat you!”
Roanoke Va. – A man stripped naked and crawled across his back yard to escape from dozens of snakes he perceived were after him. In another Roanoke case, a man bit and chewed at his mother’s arms.
Munnsville – State police responded to a scene where a woman was violently punching and choking a child. Her husband managed to get the child away, so the woman then grabbed the family dog and began abusing it in a similar manner. The woman starting spinning around in circles, stripped off her clothes, and then chased after a neighbor. As the police officers approached she began growling like a vicious animal. Pepper spray had no effect on the woman, so the troopers deployed a Taser. She died soon after. Witnesses agree that the officers had exhausted all means of restraint before utilizing the Taser.
Calgary – Witnesses observed a naked man bashing his face into a fence, attempting to take off his own nose. When the police arrived they found him sitting (still naked) staring at the ground and bleeding profusely. He became extremely combative, with what could only be described as having superhuman strength.
What could possibly make these people do the things they do? Bath Salts.
Bath salts, often labeled as an alternative to cocaine, are made from a variety of chemicals, such as methylenedioxypyrovalerone, mephedrone and pyrovalerone. The drug (not the stuff used for bathing) is typically taken orally, through inhalation or by injection. The finished product is a brain stimulant that produces an intense high, hallucinations, paranoia, intense cravings (rapid addiction to the drug), and extremely high body temperatures, which may explain so many naked abusers of the drug.
The effects of the drug are intense, and dangerous. In 2011, over 6,000 cases were reported to poison control centers.
What does the drug do to a user? Have a look at these police videos to see for yourself.