Family grieves loss of son from latest synthetic drug of concern - KCTV5 News

Family grieves loss of son from latest synthetic drug of concern

Posted: Updated:
BLUE SPRINGS, MO (KCTV) -

A product marketed for beauty but used to get high is once again under intense scrutiny, and a local family knows all too well the dangers of this product.

Investigators now say "bath salts" could be behind the grisly attack in Miami where a man bit off parts of another man's face. Police shot and killed the suspect, and the victim is still in critical condition.

While the rest of the nation is following that gruesome story out of Florida, a metro family is grieving the loss of one of their own who they say died after using a similar product.

Florida investigators say 31-year-old Roddy Eugene was under the influence of bath salts when he savagely attacked a homeless man and chewed away most of his face. Here in the metro, the family of Daniel, a Blue Springs man, says he was ingesting the same toxic substance.

He never showed signs of violence, but they knew something was wrong.

"His mood swings were changing. He would sit with his mother and have good talks. And the next minute, he is rattling off a mile a minute. You couldn't comprehend what was going on," said his father James.

James asked that his last name not be used because he believes his son bought the product locally, and he is worried about reprisals for speaking out.

James says Daniel passed away on May 22 from the effects of Pump It Powder, a so-called plant vitamin that is not marketed for human consumption but is used by addicts to get high.

But Daniel's aunt Sharon, who came in from out of town for the funeral, expressed outrage that this product is still on the market.

"To be so accessible and so dangerous, it is just incomprehensible that this could go on like this," Sharon said.

Callie Grantham with the Kansas City Community Center says people have sought treatment at her facility for addiction to synthetic products like Pump It Powder and bath salts, some of whom were unaware of the serious consequences.

"They think because its being sold over the counter that there's not any danger in it, and that is totally false," Grantham said.

And the laws in most states haven't caught up to the problems these legal substances have caused.

"It is legal and easy to do so. I think that is why it is becoming more and more popular," Grantham said.

James is sharing his story in the hopes that his family's tragedy will serve as a cautionary tale for others, and "to help other families not to have to go through this."

Grantham says synthetic products are mostly used by younger people.

The man in Florida who attacked that homeless man was 31, and Daniel was 32. Daniel's funeral is set for Friday.

Copyright 2012 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly
KCTV 5 News

Online Public File:
KCTV  KSMO

Powered by WorldNow CNN
All content © 2018, KCTV; Kansas City, MO. (A Meredith Corporation Station) . All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.