Source: New Haven Register (CT)
Pubdate: 11 Mar 1999
Copyright: 1999, New Haven Register
Author: Michelle Tuccitto


OXFORD - Two teens face drug charges after their parents found a bottle
containing the hallucinogen Ketaset, or "Special K," in their bedroom,
police said.

Douglas Gallagher, 16, and Thomas Gallagher, 17, both of 16 Dorman Road,
are charged with possession of a hallucinogenic. Both were arraigned
Tuesday in Superior Court in Derby. They were released on promises to
appear in court again March 23.

Resident State Trooper Jay Festa said the teens' parents came to the
department Monday with two bottles of the liquid anesthetic, which is used
by veterinarians. Both youths said it belonged to the other one, so police
arrested both of them, he said.

"It is the new drug out there," said Festa. "The only way someone can get
it is if it is stolen, because only veterinarians have it."

Douglas Gallagher was arrested March 3 for allegedly biting his father
during an altercation at the family home, Festa said. Douglas Gallagher
faces charges of third-degree assault and disorderly conduct from the

Valley Street Crime Unit Detective Sgt. Joseph Kudrak said the drug
"Special K" isn't very common or widespread and that unit officers haven't
encountered it much in the Valley.

In Torrington last month, two men were arrested after they were allegedly
found to be in the possession of 50 boxes of the drug.

The drug was discovered in 1961 and first appeared as a drug of abuse in
the 1970s, according to the U.S. Department of Justice Drug Enforcement

Ketaset, or ketamine, is sold to veterinarians in liquid form in vials.
However, it is sometimes converted into powder form, then snorted or
sprinkled on marijuana cigarettes. Illicit drug users typically obtain it
by burglarizing veterinary offices or buying it from corrupt veterinary

The drug is popular at "raves," or large parties with music, dancing and
drug use, authorities say.

Ketamine produces mild to severe hallucinations and effects of dreamlike
relaxation. The effects usually last up to an hour. Large doses of the drug
can lead to respiratory problems, render a person incapable of moving, or
cause vomiting or convulsions. 
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