A new kind of methamphetamine that has a strawberry flavor and bright pink coloring was seized for the first time in Carson City during a search of a Como Street apartment on Saturday, an official said.
"(We are) concerned that this new type of meth will be more attractive to a younger crowd and may surface in schools," said Sgt. Darrin Sloan, commander of the Carson City Sheriff's Department's Special Enforcement Team. "Parents and teachers, please be aware of this new kind of drug that is making its way into our culture."
Sloan said SET officers served a search warrant on the home of Cesar" Thumper" Muñoz, 29, an alleged member of the Lima Street gang, after getting information that Muñoz was selling the flavored methamphetamine known in the Sacramento area and now Carson City as "strawberry quick."
Flavored methamphetamine is the newest metamorphosis of the dangerous street drug made from ephedrine and toxic chemical such as lye and battery acid. It appears that the flavor and color were added to the meth during the cooking process, instead of afterward, which would mean the drug does not have any less potency than its common counterpart.
Methamphetamine can be ingested by snorting, smoking, or injecting.
Sloan said the "strawberry quick" methamphetamine is popular among new users who snort it because the flavoring can cut down on the taste. He said teenagers, who have been taught meth is bad, may see this flavored version as less harmful.
"This is designed for the younger crowd. If (dealers) can get younger people using it, they can get long-time buyers," he said.
"This stuff is new to us," Sloan said.
Muñoz allegedly sold 2 grams of "strawberry quick," in crystal form, to a SET informant. Sloan said no other drugs were found during a search of Muñoz's apartment. He was charged with sales, delivery and transport of a controlled substance, and remained in custody Sunday on a $20,000 bail.
SET will continue to work undercover in an attempt to stem the sale and use of methamphetamine in Carson City, Sloan said. Since Jan. 1, 117.3 grams of methamphetamine and 28.3 grams of marijuana have been seized, and more than a dozen people have been arrested in similar SET operations.
Anyone with information on "strawberry quick" or methamphetamine sales or use is asked to call the Meth Hotline at 887-2020, ext. METH; or Sloan at 887-2020, ext. 3174.
Contact reporter F.T. Norton at email@example.com or 881-1213.