During spring break, police use social media to warn about synthetic marijuana

As more people use social media in their everyday lives, local police departments are reaching out to teens and parents about the dangers of drugs during spring break.

The Rio Grande City Police Department warned teens and others about synthetic marijuana and whip-its with a public service announcement.

Teens and young adults use these drugs more this time of year, Police Chief Noe Castillo said.

"Summer is when kids have more time to do stuff, so we're going to try to get into the schools a little more," said Castillo.

He said the synthetic marijuana packaging can fool parents.

"If somebody sees it in a backpack or something, you’ll think they’re gummy bears or some other type of candy," said Castillo.

Drivers also are using whip-its while on the road, according to Castillo

Castillo said the metal pieces can be found along the road after drivers throw the items out of the vehicles.

To avoid issues with drugs and teens, police encourage parents to ask their children if they have seen anything suspicious at schools or with friends.

He said synthetic marijuana is hard to identify.

"You kind of oversee it because all our busy lives what’s going on in their lives,” said Castillo. “We need to catch it before it gets worse."

The dangers that could follow are seizures and even brain damage.

Castillo said synthetic marijuana is laced with multiple chemicals, and it can take one high to end your life.

"It can change someone's life forever,” said Castillo.

The Rio Grande Police Department ordered around 50 kits to test for the drugs.

Castillo said it is difficult since the ingredients to make the synthetic pot constantly changes.