Mt. Rainier has now banned synthetic marijuana from being sold in the city. Prince George's County Bureau Chief Tracee Wilkins talked to a mother who is relieved after her son got seriously ill from using the products.
Mt. Rainier officials announced a steep fine and possible jail time for any synthetic drug sellers caught in the act.
Tuesday night, the Mt. Rainier City Council passed legislation giving synthetic drug sellers a $1,000 fine or six months in jail.
"We wanted to send a message out, basically that this is not going to be allowed or accepted in the city and it gives us more local control with our police department," Mt. Rainier City Manager Jeannelle Wallace said.
The council went as far as to close a local store they found selling the synthetic drugs.
Ieshia Wilson's 13-year-old son was rushed to the hospital a few months ago steps from their Mt. Rainier home after using synthetic marijuana.
"It amazes me that something legal can be worse than a drug," Wilson said. "He didn't even know his name and couldn't tell the police where he lived. They actually found his phone to call me."
Wilson said her son has undergone rehabilitation since the incident, but remains worried about the availability of the drugs.
"He just told me, 'Ma, I can go to Brentwood and buy it,'" Wilson said. "That's not too far from here."
Mt. Rainier Police said they have seen approximately 10 incidents similar to Wilson's.