Police conduct surprise inspections looking for K2 at Brooklyn stores

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Thursday, July 14, 2016
Surprise inspections at stores in Brooklyn near where dozens overdosed
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Tim Fleischer has the latest details.

BEDFORD-STUYVESANT, Brooklyn (WABC) -- Law enforcement officials conducted surprise inspections at stores in Brooklyn Wednesday near where dozens of people became sick, likely from K2.

The sheriff's department and NYPD conducted five simultaneous inspections at delis and stores near Broadway and Myrtle in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section, looking for the synthetic marijuana.

Deputies said they did not find any K2, but three people were arrested on unrelated charges.

At least 33 people were taken to the hospital Tuesday after someone called 911 to report that people were walking around in a dazed and confused state. Officials have pinpointed most of the cases to an overdose of K2.

This video shows some of the people suspected of using K2:

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams released a statement saying: "I want to thank the City entities that coordinated today's multi-agency raid - including the New York City Sheriff's Office, New York City Police Department, New York City Department of Consumer Affairs, and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene - on businesses in Bedford-Stuyvesant suspected of selling K2. There will need to be a sustained wave of enforcement actions to root out the individuals peddling poison to innocent Brooklynites at the intersection of Broadway and Myrtle Avenue, as well as the surrounding area, as part of a larger investigation to determine who is manufacturing and delivering this drug into our communities. The public education campaign that local elected officials and I sparked today must continue, as everyone must be mobilized to battle this epidemic. Anyone with information on those selling K2 is asked to call 311 and report the condition immediately. We must demand every corner of our borough and our city be safe places where we can raise healthy children and families, and combating this public health emergency is one critical component of the work facing all of us as we pursue this most fundamental mission."


Eyewitness News reporter Tim Fleischer talked with Sarafin Perez, who said he's been using K2 for five years.

"I know people that have quit dope to smoke K2," said Perez. That's how bad this drug really is - and addictive. And you get sick when you don't smoke it."

Perez said he knows the drug's dangers and said he saw numerous people become sick Tuesday.

"When that good strong one comes, for instance. Me? I know how to control the strong one," Perez explained. "The strong one - you take a pull you will be OK. You take two pulls you're going to be out of it."

K2 leaves people stumbling around, and even makes some people violent and unpredictable. Most are left in a zombie-like state.

Mayor Bill de Blasio talked about this particular incident Wednesday.

"Lots of forms of K2, lots of mixtures. This one was a very bad and dangerous one that people didn't know before they were trying, and it had horrible effects," de Blasio said.


Outreach specialists are working to help K2 users.

"What we do is come out here and try to help them go to detox or rehab," said Wilredo Roldos with the After Hours Project.


Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams said he's been warning residents about the dangers of K2 over the past year.

"K2 is not going to take control of our community the way heroin and crack did in later years," said Adams.

Adams said he wants to fight the K2 epidemic with law enforcement, civil enforcement against people who sell K2 and with education.