Bonne Terre police believe ‘Flakka’ is responsible for recent disturbances

BONNE TERRE, MO - The Bonne Terre Police Chief suspects an illegal drug known as flakka is to blame for 2 recent disturbances involving irrational behavior.  Chief Doug Calvert said his department has been studying flakka after a medical doctor told them the synthetic drug appeared to be the source of some bizarre conduct.

“It took approximately 5 to 6 officers to hold that subject down just to keep him from hurting himself or anyone else and it took at least 4 paramedics to subdue him and get enough medication in him to balance him and was still violent until we got him to a hospital where a doctor could administer the type of medication to counteract whatever he was on,” Calvert said.

During the most recent incident, a liquor store locked out the subject after he made a scene.  Police said he was trying to argue with buildings and was eventually tased after acting aggressively towards officers.

“The person under the influence of that (flakka) often envisions seeing dragons, they envision seeing monsters, they view vehicles which they attack as monsters,” said Calvert.

The manager of the store near the most recent incident said it’s impossible to know what a person in that condition might do.

“They can rob a store.  They can’t know what they’re doing because they’re obviously messed up,” said Zach Edgar.

We first reported on the dangers of flakka in 2015.

Dr. George Mekhijan is an Emergency Department Physician with SSM Health St. Joseph Hospital-St. Charles.  He believes the problem is getting worse.  He said flakka is a newer form of bath salts, a synthetic street drug that can kill.

“They are so agitated that they act like what we call “superhumans”.  It takes like 6 to 10 adults to restrain the patient and they come yelling and screaming and spitting, scratching, punching, hitting,” said Dr. Mekhijan.

He hopes anyone involved with flakka will turn to any area medical facility for help.