Law enforcement officials concerned over new, flesh-eating drug

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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- Wisconsin investigators are on the lookout for yet another, new, dangerous, and highly addictive drug.

As officers all across the state are learning more about Krokodil, a drug from Russia, the Eau Claire Police Department is possibly investigating its first case.

Krokodil, also known as Crocodile to American users is branded as heroin.

Police say it's injected and leaves the injected spot dark and scaly, similar to a crocodile, before starting to eat away the user's flesh.

“It’s very concerning to us as population that, that stuff is out there,” said Public Relations Officer with the Eau Claire Police Department Kyle Roder.

You may have seen it on Facebook, with startling images of people with large open wounds; now Krokodil has shown its teeth in Eau Claire.

The Eau Claire Police Department say a man was severely intoxicated on west Madison Street last week.

“At the hospital he indicated that he has injected himself with the drug (krokodil) and he did have two large scabs on his arm that would be consistent with the injection points of the drug,” said Roder.

Roder says the drug is relatively unknown to the department, but based on their research he says the drug is made of codeine, iodine, and gasoline.

“It’s much like heroin; it's injected,” said Roder. “It causes severe sores that are essentially flesh easting sores; they will eat away person's flesh, and cause significant issues to their body.”

Roder says codeine is an over the counter drug in Russia; in the U.S. it's prescription-based and is harder to get.

“It being a restricted substance will help, from people not having access to codeine to make the drug itself“ said Roder.

NBC reports show the drug has appeared in several states in the U.S. and other countries.
Roder says the police department will continue to investigate the origins of the drug, how it's getting here and if there are any traces of Krokodil in our area.

“We're keeping our eye on it. We're trying to make sure we know as much about it as we can, and we monitor it in our community,” added Roder.

Officer Roder says the West Central Drug Task Force is now assisting with the possible case.

Experts say users typically die after two years of using it. And even if people kick the habit, they risk losing arms, legs and suffering severe brain damage.

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