Woman finds cocaine wrapped in her granola bar

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San Antonio police are investigating how a packet of cocaine ended up inside a wrapped Nature Valley granola bar.

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Cynthia Rodriguez of San Antonio says she was eating the bar when a small, green bag emblazoned with dollar signs fell out. Rodriguez contacted manufacturer General Mills Inc, thinking she had won a prize. Company officials told her to call the police.

Rodriguez contacted police on 18 March and investigators determined the bag contained cocaine.

Sergeant Javier Salazar says authorities are trying to determine how the package got inside the granola bar wrapper.

A General Mills spokesman said on Thursday that the Minneapolis-based company is confident the cocaine wasn’t packaged with the bar at a company facility. Mike Siemienas declined to say where the bar was produced.

Feds Bust Jamaican Traveler With Half-Kilo Of Cocaine Wedged In His Underwear

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As if getting arrested for drug smuggling was not bad enough, a Jamaican man had to pose for the above evidence photo showing two packages of cocaine wedged between his underwear and a pair of bicycle shorts.

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Romario Lewis was arrested April 16 after traveling on a Fly Jamaica flight from Kingston to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. Lewis, carrying a non-immigrant visitor visa, was selected for examination by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, according to court records.

Lewis, investigators reported, appeared nervous and avoided eye contact and was fidgeting as his baggage was examined. Agents then conducted a pat down of Lewis and felt a “hard object in the area of the defendant’s groin.” A further search revealed that Lewis was “wearing bicycle shorts under his pants” that “concealed two transparent bags containing a white powdery substance.”

Before testing the white powder, agents photographed Lewis from behind, showing the diaper-like bulge in his bicycle shorts (as seen below). They then had Lewis lower the shorts to reveal the cocaine packages nestled under his red drawers.

A subsequent field test showed the packages contained half a kilo of cocaine.

Lewis, who has been locked up since his arrest, was named last Wednesday in a two-count federal indictment charging him with possession and importation of cocaine.

Flakka, synthetic drug behind increasingly bizarre crimes

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One man ran naked through a Florida neighborhood, tried to have sex with a tree and told police he was the mythical god Thor. Another ran nude down a busy city street in broad daylight, convinced a pack of German shepherds was pursuing him.

FlakkaTwo others tried separately to break into the Fort Lauderdale Police Department. They said they thought people were chasing them; one wound up impaled on a fence.

The common element to these and other bizarre incidents in Florida in the last few months is flakka, an increasingly popular synthetic designer drug. Also known as gravel and readily available for $5 or less a vial, it’s a growing problem for police after bursting on the scene in 2013.

It is the latest in a series of synthetic drugs that include Ecstasy and bath salts, but officials say flakka is even easier to obtain in small quantities through the mail. Flakka’s active ingredient is a chemical compound called alpha-PVP, which is on the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s list of the controlled substances most likely to be abused. It is usually made overseas in countries such as China and Pakistan.

87650bb90fdce65d139b59000ced5022Flakka, a derivative of the Spanish word for a thin, pretty woman, is usually sold in a crystal form and is often smoked using electronic cigarettes, which are popular with young people and give off no odor. It can also be snorted, injected or swallowed.

“I’ve had one addict describe it as $5 insanity,” said Don Maines, a drug treatment counselor with the Broward Sheriff’s Office in Fort Lauderdale. “They still want to try it because it’s so cheap. It gives them heightened awareness. They feel stronger and more sensitive to touch. But then the paranoia sets in.”

Judging from the evidence being seized by police around Florida, flakka use is up sharply. Submissions for testing to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s crime labs have grown from 38 in 2013 to 228 in 2014. At the Broward Sheriff’s Office laboratory, flakka submissions grew from fewer than 200 in 2014 to 275 already, in just the first three months of this year, according to spokeswoman Keyla Concepcion.

“It’s definitely something we are watching. It’s an emerging drug,” said Chad Brown, an FDLE supervisory special agent.

bbc54d8ffb9030a5bb9c4736698e0eadAccording to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Florida appears to be the nation’s hot spot for reports of flakka, also known as gravel. News reports have also cited flakka or gravel appearing in Ohio, Texas and Tennessee.

In one recent case, 22-year-old Jaime Nicole Lewis was charged in a DEA complaint with conspiracy to distribute flakka after DEA agents based in London intercepted U.S.-bound packages of the drug that were made in Hong Kong. An undercover DEA agent posing as a delivery company employee then brought the packages to Lewis’ home in Palm Beach County, according to a court affidavit.

“Synthetic drugs are illegal and present a grave danger to our community, particularly our children,” said Miami U.S. Attorney Wifredo Ferrer.

Lewis is being held without bail and is due to enter a plea next week. Her attorney, Paul Lazarus, said prosecutors will have to prove she knew the packages contained illegal drugs. A man believed to be the flakka ringleader in this case also is charged, but has not been arrested.

James West, a 50-year-old homeless man, was caught on surveillance video in February trying to kick in the heavy glass front door of the Fort Lauderdale Police Department, finally cracking it with large rocks. Bleeding above one eye, West told officers that he was desperate for help from police because “he was being chased by 20-25 individuals and he didn’t know why.” He later told police he had smoked flakka.

In March, Shanard Neely got impaled through the buttocks on the department’s 10-foot-high security fence while trying to climb over, convinced he was being pursued and that “he needed to go to jail or they would kill him,” police said. Neely, 37, also told officers he had smoked flakka. It took hours for rescuers to cut him down.

And in Palm Beach County, a SWAT team had to talk Leroy Strothers, 33, off a rooftop in January. He had fired a shot from up there, claiming he was being followed by a Haitian gang that had threatened his family. Strothers, who was charged with being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm, told officers he had smoked flakka and could not remember how he got on the roof.

“I’m feeling delusional and hallucinating,” Strothers said, according to a sheriff’s report.

The FDLE’s Brown said his agency is training police to better recognize flakka and the symptoms it can cause.

One challenge is that flakka manufacturers make subtle changes to its chemical makeup, foiling efforts to test for the drug, and it is frequently mixed with other substances, such as crack cocaine or heroin, with unknown effects, said Maines, of the Broward Sheriff’s Office.

With prolonged use over as little as three days, behavioral changes can be severe.

“It actually starts to rewire the brain chemistry. They have no control over their thoughts. They can’t control their actions,” Maines said. “It seems to be universal that they think someone is chasing them. It’s just a dangerous, dangerous drug.”

High on bath salts, alleged Norse god attempts tree love

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A 41-year-old Florida man is facing a pantheon of charges after allegedly getting hammered on bath salts, declaring himself to be Norse storm god Thor, attempting to commit “a sexual act on a tree”, shrugging off two taserings, and assaulting a police officer.

1210048760706870307According to this report, Kenneth Crowder was spotted this month thundering through the streets of Melbourne, Southeast of Orlando, “yelling that he was a god” before getting arboreally jiggy.

When confronted by a police officer, Crowder approached the cop “in an aggressive manner and identified himself as God”.

A first tasering proved ineffective as the perp “pulled the probes out of his body and continued to fight”. A second high voltage blast ended similarly, as Crowder “again pulled out the probes and went at the officer with clenched fists”.

The cop then punched his adversary in the face “and a scrum ensued, with Crowder saying that he was Thor and trying to stab the officer with the officer’s badge”.

Police reinforcements were required to finally handcuff and shackle the alleged deity, who was arrested on charges of “battery on a law enforcement officer, resisting with violence, and assault with a deadly weapon on a law enforcement officer”.

Cops suspect Crowder was bombed on “flakka” – “a variation of synthetic substances known as bath salts” which offers “a cheap, powerful high while acting as an amphetamine”.

Bath salts is an umbrella term for designer drugs, commonly synthetic cathinones such as mephedrone, based on their apparent resemblance to Epsom salts.

Melbourne police spokesman Dan Lynch said of the drug: “We have spoken to some medical professionals here and they are starting to see an increase in its use. It’s already in South Florida and we think it’s coming here.” ®

“Spanx Smuggler,” 70, Arrested With Four Pounds Of Cocaine In Her Girdles, Underwear

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A 70-year-old woman had four pounds of cocaine stashed in her girdles and underwear, according to federal agents who found the stash during a pat down at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York.

jfkgarmentsOlive Fowler, a Guyana resident, arrived at JFK last Sunday on a Caribbean Airlines flight from Georgetown, Guyana. Traveling on a non-immigrant visitor’s visa, Fowler was selected for an examination by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers, according to a criminal complaint.

While agents examined her baggage, Fowler “was sweating profusely and avoiding eye contact with the officers,” an investigator reported. Suspicious agents then opted to peform a pat down search of Fowler.

“CBP officers…felt a dense, hard material under the defendant’s clothes in the area of the defendant’s groin and buttocks,” the complaint notes. As it turned out, Fowler was wearing two pairs of compression shorts over her underwear, garments that held nearly two kilos of cocaine (which has a street value in excess of $73,000).

The accused septuagenarian smuggler was then arrested on a felony narcotics charge. Locked up in Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Center, Fowler is scheduled for an April 27 preliminary hearing in U.S. District Court.

As seen above, CBP officials released evidence photos showing Fowler’s assorted undergarments, including a shot of one girdle that was cut open to reveal the cocaine hidden inside.

While the brand of Fowler’s compression garments is unknown, that should not keep anyone from referring to her forthwith as the “Spanx Smuggler.”

Roommates stab each other with beer bottles in iPhone vs. Android dispute

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12587-6622-7487271_G-lKTUL reported that a woman found one of the men stumbling around Evergreen Apartments around 1 a.m., covered in blood. Police were called, and subsequent investigation discovered that the men had been drinking.

When the phone argument turned violent, the pair broke their beer bottles and stabbed each other. At one point during the fracas, one of the men smashed their bottle over the other’s head.

The seriousness of the injuries hasn’t been made public, nor is it yet clear whether police or either of the victims are planning to press charges.

The iPhone versus Android debate is a common trope in American culture. iPhone owners will often claim features such as a smoother interface, better-integrated features and higher build quality, while Android owners will point to things like cheaper prices, a more flexible operating system, and/or technical superiority in some models.

Android devices generally enjoy a larger marketshare, since the operating system is used by a wide range of phone makers. The iPhone however is frequently the most popular individual brand, particularly in countries like China and the U.S.

Vermont lawmakers: Make pot legal or we ban booze

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635648658901902651-041715PNI-MarijuanaTwo Vermont lawmakers fed up with delays to legalize marijuana in the state introduced a headline-grabbing measure this week designed to move things along: one that would outlaw alcohol. Legislators Chris Pearson and Jean O’Sullivan admit they have no interest in reinstating Prohibition, but they want to make a larger point, reports Vermont Public Radio.

In their eyes, marijuana is safer than alcohol, so why ban that drug and leave the other untouched?

“The object was to basically embarrass leadership to say that we have [marijuana legalization bills] in front of us, and they’re going absolutely nowhere,” O’Sullivan tells the Huffington Post.

Their bill would make those found in possession of small amounts of alcohol subject to fines of up to $500, and anyone caught selling or distributing it faces 30 years in prison and $1 million in fines.