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New Jersey Governor Chris Christie this week signed legislation that bans sale of synthetic drugs such as “bath salts.” Under the new law, it is a crime to possess or sell the chemicals used to make synthetic drugs.

The law is named after Pamela Schmidt, a student at Rutgers University who was allegedly killed by her boyfriend while he was high on bath salts, The Press of Atlantic City reports.

Bath salts are sold in convenience stores or head shops, and are also available online. They are sold under names such as Vanilla Sky and Ivory Wave.

Bath salts have grown increasingly popular in the last year. Emergency rooms are seeing a growing number of people high on the drugs. They come in powder and crystal form, and are snorted, injected or smoked. The American Association of Poison Control Centers says poison control centers received 3,470 calls about bath salts during the first six months of this year, a jump from 303 calls in all of 2010.

The drugs can cause extreme paranoia, hallucinations, delusions, rapid heart rate, chest pain and suicidal thoughts.


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