New reports suggest a flesh eating drug has made its way to the Tri-State area.
Authorities in Columbus, Ohio, said they may have had their first case of Krokodil, a deadly new drug to the United States. Krokodil has been an issue in Russia for several years, authorities said.
The drug is made up of ingredients like Codeine, gasoline, and paint thinner. It's more potent and dangerous than heroin. Those who abuse it develop green, scale-like spots, police said. When injected, the drug causes your flesh to rot off its bones.
Lt. Chad Napier is the Bureau Chief of Investigative Services for the Charleston Police Department. He said there are no known-cases in this area, however, he has read up on the drug and deadly effects it has on those who use it.
He said it's disturbing the drug is possibly so close to Charleston.
"This drug is very devastating. You've seen some of the pictures. It's flesh-eating, bones exposed, and the average life-span of individuals who started using this drug is 2-3 years," he said.
Napier said the concept isn't much different than the one used to cook methamphetamine.
According to the WV Poison Center, none of the suspected Krokodil cases in the United States have officially been confirmed. Dr. Elizabeth Scharman said it could take several months to prove someone took Krokodil. First, doctors would need to take a biopsy of the dead or infected skin. Then, they would have to rule out other skin infections, she said. They would also need a sample of the drug which was injected into the patient's body.
Still, reports of the drug so close to West Virginia is enough to illicit chatter among local law enforcement agencies.
"Our pipe line is from Detroit, down to Columbus, they are kind of interrelated right into Charleston, so it's very concerning," Napier said.
Napier said he hopes the drug does not make its way to Charleston, however, it's on their radar if it does.