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Brown County Drug Task Force notices rise of Krokodil cases

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BELLEVUE, WI (WTAQ) - There's a new drug that's showing up in parts of the U.S. which has law enforcement concerned.

It's called Krokodil.

"It'll give you the same effects as heroin, it gives you a narcotic high, it's just as addictive, but its selling point is that it's cheap," says Brown County Sheriff's Lt. David Poteat. "Where heroin sells for, in this area, maybe $300 a gram or higher, you can get an injection of Krokodil for $6 to $8."

The "heroin substitute" has been seen in cases reported in the Chicago area and Phoenix. Its origin and heavy popularity is in Russia.

Krokodil, also known as Desomorphine, is generally made when you mix codeine with gasoline, lighter fluid or paint thinner.

Its devastating side effects include abscesses, gangrene and even skin falling off the bone.

With Wisconsin's growing heroin problem, and the trail of that opioid leading through Milwaukee and Chicago, Lt. Poteat believes it's only a matter of time before Krokodil crawls into the Badger State.

"There is a concern that maybe it's here already, and we just haven't realized it yet. That's why the public and those using injectable drugs need to realize this is out there," says Lt. Poteat. "I think as we get the information out there, if there is someone that is seeing skin problems that relate to that, they should see their doctor. And if it is occurring, I think we're gonna find out very quickly how far that's spreading."

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