Odessa Bans Synthetic Drug Packages

Odessa Bans Synthetic Drug Packages

Brian Wise
NewsWest 9

ODESSA- It was an emotional Tuesday for people affected by synthetic drugs. Some have watched their family on this substance for more than a year. Brady Jones is a mother who has watched her son as a victim.

"My son is a user and he's struggled with it for about a year. And I've seen many different stages of what it will do to him," Jones said.

Tuesday night, the Odessa City Council moved to ban the sale of synthetic drugs by making shops tell people exactly what their buying. Colorful packages look like cleaner or plant food but are meant to be ingested.

Shops in the city limits have 30 days to remove these packages from shelves.

NewsWest 9 talked to people who have suffered the effects of these drugs firsthand. Jonathan Venable is now a speaker against synthetic drugs because he did them firsthand.

"I turned to bath salts because I thought they were legal. They kicked my butt harder than any dope ever did. I thought I could get away with it and that they were okay because of them being legal. I ended up in ICU twice. On life support twice. Five days a-piece," Venable said.

Gabby Reyes spoke at the meeting Tuesday saying her son lost four years of his memory after doing synthetic drugs. She spoke to NewsWest 9 after the meeting.

"(I) saw my son when he stopped eating. I would see him on it. And you could see some devil eyes just looking at you. I would see him hallucinate. He would look like he was talking to somebody and no one was there," Reyes said.

Anna Scroggins is a drug counselor and saw something needed to be done. She has been working on getting this motion passed for months.

"In my heart, I was nervous and worried but I didn't realize that it was actually going to pass. I was afraid this council was going to give me another comment that they have said before 'We're looking it over; We're not sure' and today (Tuesday) when they actually voted on it and it was passed, I cried," Scroggins said.

Scroggins told NewsWest 9 she has no plans to quit fighting the sale of these substances. Both her and Venable said the next step is to get county to ban these drugs.