Synthetic Drug Use Outweighs Meth & Heroin In Some Towns

FOX Files
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TROY, MO (KTVI)– Lucrative drug sales continue despite new laws.  Stores keep hiding dangerous substances in packages with different names. FOX 2 investigator Chris Hayes picked up some of the latest stuff – and got action.

It`s called King Karma – a new name and a different package – but it appears to be another trick to help kids get a dangerous high.

We bought some from a store called RetroActive in Troy, Missouri and took it to the St. Louis County toxicology lab.  Doctor Chris Long found reported illegal substances.  Then Roger Mauzy and other narcotics officers raided.

Mauzy said, “After receiving your report, we took all their King Karma out of our ‘Retro’ store, which entailed about $10,000 worth of product.”

That could save lives according to Bob Welsh with the Missouri Safety Center.  We talked with him via Skype about his tests on similar synthetics, “They overwhelm certain portions of the brain, and so instead of getting relaxed and unhibited, these synthetic Cannabinoids really overwhelm the brain and you really don`t know what you`re gonna get.”

Synthetic pot and also the synthetic cocaine, seem to turn people into entirely different animals.

Police describe responding to cases, like a woman on the roof of a house with a rope around her neck claiming police were watching her from the trees and a naked man cutting himself claiming he had to get the wires out from under his skin.

Mauzy added, “And when I say cuts, Chris, he had deep lacerations on his body.  They weren’t just superficial cuts.”

Mauzy said officers are responding to more calls involving synthetic drugs — than calls involving meth and heroin.  He said it’s “because everybody assumes that it`s… legal to possess.”

Police hope to fight this misconception and combat synthetic drugs at a town hall meeting next week.

It`ll be at Troy High School April 23rd at 6:30 pm.

Find out more at

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The Fox Files are groundbreaking investigations you won’t see anywhere else. The series is well known for breaking the Pam Hupp story nationally. The reports that led to the exoneration of Russ Faria. But, it is far from the only time in which our investigations led to overturned convictions and freedom for the wrongfully accused. The Fox Files investigations do not fit into just one category, other than the fact our reports shine a light on issues and corruption in ways you won’t see anywhere else.

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It doesn’t stop just in St. Louis. The Pam Hupp/Russ Faria story took him to Lincoln County. Fox 2 was the first to report, nationally, on the synthetic drug epidemic when it began in St. Charles County, MO. In St. Louis County, our Fox Files reporting led to the dismantling of some police departments, including the departments of Uplands Park and Jennings. And in the City of St. Louis, our investigations led to swift government actions, such as our report that led to the Governor’s ordered shut down of a daycare.

Our reporting in St. Louis also led to former Missouri Governor Eric Greitens’ exclusive Fox Files interviews involving his court fight to oust the chief prosecutor while attempting to prove that political corruption led to an illegal overturning of a state election.

“It’s not always bad news,” Hayes said about a recent victory for a restaurant in his coverage of a St. Clair County Illinois issue. A Fox Files report, exposing a health department’s mistake over the COVID-19 pandemic, led to an overturning of a decision, allowing the business to open for limited inside dining.

Another investigation took us to Madison County, where prosecutors praised Fox 2’s coverage while shutting down an illegal synthetic drug business – and to Monroe County, where we uncovered key evidence in the Chris Coleman murder trial.

Even the national media, continues reaching out to local affiliate Fox 2 KTVI and the Fox Files, for its work on cases that are important to St. Louis. When you see a network television’s coverage of St. Louis, you’ll often see that they gathered information that was first uncovered right here.


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