Bay County Death

Authorities in Bay County are hoping to learn today what kind of drug killed 21-year-old Felicia Staats. Detectives say a new drug called AMT is being sold as Ecstasy.

It's believed that Staats died after taking the pills Sunday night.

Jason Clewis, who also took the same drug, was found in "what appeared to be a daze" and nearly died from taking the same substance.

Authorities say the pills appear to be a popular form of Ecstasy known as "Blair Witch."

Investigation continues in the case.

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AMT

Although AMT is a relatively new drug of abuse, its appearance shows a trend of many non-controlled substances being sold to capitalize on the current popularity of club drugs such as MDMA, more commonly known as Ecstasy.

AMT is also called IT-290 and is known chemically as alpha-methyltryptamine. It is a hallucinogen that is found in tablet and capsule form and contains either an orange or off-white powder.

Users may experience increased energy, empathy, euphoria, hallucinations, emotional distress, anxiety, dilated pupils, jaw clenching, nausea, headaches, vomiting and diarrhea. The duration of effects from 20 mg of AMT usually last between 12 and 24 hours.

Tryptamine, the parent molecule of AMT, is known to produce convulsions and death in animals. The safety of these substances for use in humans has not been studied.

AMT is not currently listed as controlled substances in the Controlled Substances Act of 1970; however, the DEA has determined that individuals and organizations trafficking these substances with the intent of human consumption can be prosecuted under the federal drug-analog statute.

Source: http://www.usdoj.gov/dea/pubs/intel/02052/02052.html (U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration) contributed to this report.


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