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5 Woodbury teens face drug-related murder charges

Teenagers are often curious about and willing to try many things. While in middle and high school, many teen boys and girls experiment with alcohol and drugs. While most Minneapolis parents may worry about their teens smoking marijuana, many of today's teenagers are experimenting with so-called synthetic drugs.

When they first hit the marketplace, many synthetic drugs were sold legally in head shops. Unfortunately, some of these drugs had negative side effects that adversely impacted the mental and physical state of users. In response, law enforcement agencies throughout the country took steps to ban several of the materials found in synthetic drugs, thereby making the manufacturing and selling of the drugs illegal.

However, despite these bans, synthetic drug manufacturers continue to find ways to sidestep authorities and change their formulas. As a result, a teen that may fear experimenting with the original form of a drug may be more inclined to do so with a synthetic form. For some, doing so can have devastating consequences.

Five Minnesota teens were recently charged in the murder of a 17-year-old Woodbury girl who died this past January. An autopsy showed the 17-year-old died of complications after ingesting a synthetic form of the hallucinogenic drug LSD.

Police believe that three of the teens charged, all age 17, sold the synthetic drugs to the deceased teen and a friend. All have been charged with third-degree murder and will be tried as adults. Additionally, two 18-year-old's also face murder charges in the case stemming from "the sale and distribution of controlled substances."

When speaking about the murder charges filed against the five teens, a Washington County prosecutor pledged to "prosecute those individuals to the full extent of what the law allows."

This tragic case proves that teens often make mistakes and fail to understand the potential negative implications of their actions. In this case, the five teens who were reportedly involved in the distribution and sale of the synthetic drug were likely not aware that it could be deadly.

Teenagers who face drug charges or other serious criminal charges related to the manufacture, distribution or sale of illegal drugs could spend decades behind bars. It's critical, therefore, to secure a criminal defense attorney who has successfully defended against drug-related cases.

Source: The Star Tribune, "Five teenagers charged with murder in Woodbury drug overdose," Kevin Giles, May 28, 2014 

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Juvenile Criminal
Defense Strategies

Christa Jacqueline Groshek
© 2012 Aspatore Books from
Thomson Reuters Westlaw.
Reproduced by permission