Black Mamba is a killer - and the sooner we can address that problem the better - these were the chilling words issued by a local district judge and come during a police crackdown on the drug across Derbyshire.
District Judge Davison made the comments at Chesterfield magistrates’ court after sentencing a drug user to a 12-month community order.
During the case, prosecuting solicitor Sarah Haslam explained that Derbyshire police have been operating a zero-tolerance attitude with anyone caught with drugs in Chesterfield town centre.
Chief Inspector Jon Clark said over the past 12 months concerns have continued to be raised regarding the use of Mamba in Chesterfield and other Derbyshire town centres.
“Currently in Derby there is an ongoing operation to tackle the issue of the supply and production of Mamba named Operation Halifax. There have been a total of 22 charges and a further seven arrests, bringing the total number of people dealt with to 29. This builds on the extensive work that our city centre policing team have been doing in this area.
“In August 2017 Operation Barichello commenced in Chesterfield. Its aims were to tackle the street drinking and drug abuse in the town centre.
“This operation has resulted in the arrest of more than 200 people for a variety of offences, many of which have been for possession of, or supply of drugs.
“Work will continue across the county, together with our partner agencies, to tackle this type of criminality and remove this type of drugs from our county.”
Police are encourage members of the public to provide information regarding the illegal supply of these psychoactive substances by calling 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.
Councillor Chris Ludlow, Chesterfield Borough Council’s cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “In common with other towns and cities, Chesterfield has seen an increase in the use of Mamba, which brings with it problems of anti-social behaviour.
“We continue to work with other public sector partners through the Chesterfield Town Centre Partnership chaired by the Derbyshire Police and Crime Commissioner to offer help and support to Mamba users.
“With the introduction of the Public Space Protection Orders in the town centre, we work with the police to take enforcement action where necessary to keep our residents and visitors safe.”
WHAT IS BLACK MAMBA?
Black Mamba, also known as Spice, is a synthetic cannabinoid which can be bought for as little as £10 a packet.
The first generation of the drugs were in branded packets and Spice and Black Mamba were strong brand names, so that is how it has become known.
Synthetic cannabinoids contain a chemical that has been developed to act like the main psychoactive chemical in cannabis, tetrahydrocannabinol, which acts on cannabis receptors in the brain.
Because synthetic cannabinoids react more strongly with the brain’s cannabis receptors, they’re more potent than natural cannabis.
This means it’s easier to use too much and experience unpleasant and harmful effects.
Reported side-effects from using synthetic cannabinoids include:
Feelings of light-headedness, dizziness, confusion and tiredness;
Feeling excited, agitated
Anxiety and paranoia;
Memory problems and amnesia;
Nausea and vomiting;
Increased heart rate and blood pressure, which may cause chest pains and damage your heart and even cause a heart attack
Tremors, seizures and fits.