A mysterious "super drug" found on suspects in southern Louisiana has been identified as "gray death," and deputies are warning it is deadly to the touch.
True to its name, the ashen substance resembles burned chunks of charcoal, according to photos posted on Facebook by St. Mary Parish Sheriff's Office, a coastal county 85 miles west of New Orleans.
"The unidentified super drug began to surface in the south in Alabama and Georgia. A minuscule amount of this drug, which has the appearance of small chunks of concrete, can kill," the department posted.
"The public is advised to never pick up or touch this drug if you ever encounter it."
"Gray death" has been referred to as "the Trojan Horse of the opioid epidemic," Nursingcenter.com reports, and it dates to at least 2017, when it was blamed for "several fatal overdoses," according to Drugs.com. The drug is considered toxic partly because the ingredients "vary from batch to batch," with differing combinations of "heroin, fentanyl, or carfentanil," Drugs.com says.
"No matter how you administer gray death-tainted heroin, you're quite possibly writing your own death sentence," Addictioncampuses.com reports.
Deputies in St. Mary Parish say they encountered the drug during "a couple of arrests" and learned that it has "a potency 10,000 times greater than morphine," the department posted.
The suspects arrested with the drug were headed to the Lake Charles, Louisiana, area, investigators wrote. The department did not identify the suspects or list any charges filed in the case.
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