Three Illinois residents have been arrested in connection with the distribution of a strain of synthetic marijuana that can cause uncontrollable bleeding in some users. The substance has been linked to hundreds of cases of serious bleeding and three confirmed deaths.

According to the Pekin Police Department, one of the defendants, a 46-year-old male, has been charged with homicide and unlawful possession of a controlled substance with the intent to deliver. Two other defendants, a 26-year-old male and a 30-year-old female, have been charged with possession with the intent to deliver and aggravated battery.

The homicide charge stems from the death of a 47-year-old man. Prosecutors accuse the defendant of selling synthetic marijuana to the victim and his girlfriend on April 7. The following day, the victim suffered severe stomach pain and began vomiting blood. On April 9, he died. His girlfriend then told police that the defendant was his drug dealer. Police arrested the defendant, and he allegedly told them he had been dealing a synthetic marijuana known as K2. He also confessed to dumping his drug stash in a dumpster near his home. A search of the dumpster yielded 3,500 packets of the substance. Authorities believe some strains of synthetic pot have been laced with rat poison, which can cause severe bleeding.

Individuals facing drug distribution and other drug charges may be able to avoid conviction by hiring a criminal defense attorney to represent them in court. An attorney could conduct an investigation into the case and work to build a solid defense that undermines the prosecution’s claims.

Source: Gizmodo, “Illinois Police Make First Arrests Over Deadly Synthetic Weed Linked to Uncontrollable Bleeding“, Ed Cara, April 16, 2018