Police say an anonymous tip alleging a possible meth lab at 2016 Tanglewood Drive in Jonesboro led JPD's PROWL unit to something many say they've never seen before.
"This is not something that we want to see out on the street. We don't know how addictive it is, it's not something that's dealt with very often," said Jason Chester.
PROWL unit member Jason Chester says at first, even they thought they were dealing with a meth lab, but Chester says the man they arrested, Tony Shimkus, advised the PROWL unit it wasn't what they thought. Officers learned they were dealing with Dimethyltryptamine--or DMT.
"We began researching, calling, trying to network to see who knew something about this. Finally, we were able to establish that it is a schedule one, non narcotic drug," said Chester.
Chester says DMT is a hallucinogen--similar to LSD in properties and affects it has on the body.
"You can go out on your hour lunch, ingest this drug, have a high for approximately 30 to 45 minutes, and return to work as normal," said Chester.
"It's because of that, Chester says, DMT is known as the business man's lunch--taking affect on the body within 30 to 45 seconds after being used. Chester says it's also a drug officials on the local and state level rarely, if ever, deal with.
"From the DEA, they've only had 31 cases from 1999 to now involving this drug. The crime lab informed us this is the first DMT lab in the state of Arkansas.>
Chester says there are approximately 20 different plants that contain DMT. He says it can take up to a month or more to make a very small amount of the drug. While JPD officers continue to learn more about the drug, Chester says they want to share what they're learning.
"We're trying to just inform ourselves, and inform the public," said Chester.
By Lauren Payne
July 28, 2009