Woman hospitalized after smoking legal marijuana-like substance

By Al Pefley - bio | email

GREENACRES, FL (WFLX) - It's sold under various names, such as Mr. Nice Guy, K-2, Lotus and Peace of Mind. It's an herbal smoke blend, but many stores are selling the marijuana-like substitute to teens and young adults who are looking for a legal high.

Charly Mendelsohn says she's lucky to be alive after trying what, she thought, was a harmless product she bought at a kiosk in the Boynton Beach Mall. "I think, it's dangerous," she said.

The 20-year-old Greenacres woman says she and a co-worker smoked Mr. Nice Guy, an herbal blend that is sold as incense. In fact, it says "incense" on the package, and it also says "not for human consumption". You can buy it at convenience stores and malls.

Some people, however, smoke it like marijuana to get high.

Mendelsohn says she and her co-worker put some in a hookah pipe and smoked it. "We smoked it, like two hits apiece, and, instantly, I remember just feeling completely out of it," she said. "Within 10 minutes, I'm pretty sure I was passed out on the floor."

She says, after smoking Mr. Nice Guy, she experienced loss of breath, increased heart rate, violent shaking, and couldn't talk.

Paramedics rushed her to the hospital. "I don't think that any substance or anything should make you feel that way, and I don't think that it's safe," she said.

We went to the kiosk and spoke with the man selling Mr. Nice Guy. "It's an incense, [and], not for human consumption," he said. "But, if you use it in a wrong way, then, definitely it's going to mess you up."

He says he's not doing anything wrong by selling it. "I'm selling it as incense. If they're using it the wrong way, that's their mistake," he defended.

There are YouTube videos showing people how to smoke Mr. Nice Guy.

Other municipalities around the country have either banned the sale of Mr. Nice Guy or are considering banning it.

A spokeswoman for the Palm Beach County Sheriff's office says their narcotics officers have not found that Mr. Nice Guy is a problem locally, and they have not discussed a possible ban with county commissioners.

We were not able to reach the chair or vice-chair of the Palm Beach County Commission for comment.

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