Pubdate: Fri,  8 Sep 2000
Source: Corpus Christi Caller-Times (TX)
Copyright: 2000 Corpus Christi Caller-Times
Address: P.O. Box 9136, Corpus Christi, TX 78469-9136
Author: Sara Lee Fernandez


Police Admit Concerns Over Valium-Like Drug, Which Is More Accessible And 
Just As Dangerous

The 1,700 pills taken from a Kingsville home in a raid Tuesday weren't the 
date rape drug Rohypnol, police discovered Thursday.

The pills are Rivotrial, according to officials with the Department of 
Public Safety.

Rivotrial, also known as Klonopin, is a Valium-like drug that is prescribed 
by doctors for various uses. Rohypnol has no medical use in the United 
States and is illegal.

Kingsville police are worried that the Rivotrial is being passed off as 

"They are selling (Rivotrial) to other kids as Rohypnol," said Cmdr. Jaime 
Garza of the South Texas Specialized Crimes and Narcotics Task Force in 

"Now it's even more dangerous than Rohypnol because it's a lot more easily 
accessible to kids."

But Rivotrial is just as dangerous as Rohypnol, if not more so.

"When it's introduced to the body, you can lose memory," said Hector 
Cadena, a forensic chemist for the Texas Department of Public Safety.

Cadena said Rivotrial is sometimes given to patients about to undergo 
surgery, so that if for some reason the anesthetic wears off, the patient 
will not remember the pain.

Garza said police misidentified the drug after conducting a preliminary 
test that indicated the pills contained a chemical found in Rohypnol.

Witness statements indicated that the pills were being sold as Rohypnol, he 

George Eric Adame, 19, was arrested on Tuesday after police found the 
pills, about $600 cash and less than two ounces of marijuana at his home. 
He remains in the Kleberg County Jail without a bond.

Garza said that although he doesn't want to alarm parents, he wants them to 
understand that this drug can become a problem not just in Kingsville but 
in all surrounding counties.

"We don't want to cause a panic, we want to cause a safety alert," Garza said.

"I've gotten calls (Thursday) from parents saying that they've seen the 
little packets thrown on the streets."

Garza said that the task force and the Kingsville Police Department will 
continue to look for several hundred pills that they think are still missing.

"We still need help from the public," he said.

Garza said anyone with a tip about the missing pills can call him at (800) 
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