Spice still affecting families in Kern County

Posted at 6:41 PM, Mar 11, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-12 02:16:39-05

Despite being banned in Kern County last year, spice is still a prevalent and dangerous force around town, and it's having a grave effect on families.

"Well it's greatly impacting my family life," says Rachel Darrah. "My son is currently addicted and throwing up blood."

The drug, which looks marijuana, is sprayed with toxic chemicals. These chemicals are what make spice so dangerous.

Kern County Public health says that the chemicals are often applied in varying portions, making one hit of the drug different from the next and leading to completely unpredictable side effects.

They also said that probation officers have told them that meth addicts won't come near spice because it's so dangerous.

"I feel like it's life and death that I'm fighting for my son," Darrah said. "He pretty much takes me or my parents hostage until he gets his fix."

This isn't the first time that spice has had an effect on Kern County families. Opal Cook's son was the first to die from spice in the county nearly four years ago.

"There's nothing more [horrible] to go through in life than burying your children," Cook said.

Now, both she and Darrah are focused on getting the word out about the drug that has taken such a toll on them.

"I couldn't save my son, but I could save other people," Cook said.

An ordinance passed by the Kern County Board of Supervisors late last year made it illegal to buy, sell, or use the drug in unincorporated areas of Kern County.

If you would like to report a facility that you suspect of selling spice or have any questions, call Kern County Public Health at 661-321-3000.