A 13-year-old girl found lying on the road screaming incoherently is one of a growing number of disturbing incidents of Feilding youths taking legal highs, police say.
The girl was found on McCorkindale St at 7.30pm yesterday, and whatever she had taken appeared to be having a "severe effect" on her, Feilding police Sergeant David Burmeister said.
"She was basically incoherent. She was lying on the ground screaming."
An ambulance was called and a friend with the 13-year-old told police at the scene that the girl had been taking legal highs.
The girl was taken to Palmerston North Hospital in a "moderate condition", a St John ambulance spokeswoman said.
Mr Burmeister said Feilding police were having to deal with a spate of callouts stemming from youths using the drugs.
"It's young people that are taking this stuff and they are doing some silly things when they do."
Amid fanfare in June, Feilding's central business district became one of the first communities in the country where businesses agreed to stop selling legal highs.
The Psychoactive Substances Act passed in July banned the sale of the controversial synthetic drugs in dairies, supermarkets, petrol stations and anywhere alcohol is sold and prohibited their sale to those aged under 18.
The law allows for the products to be sold in licensed stores but puts the onus on producers to prove the drugs are safe.
Mr Burmeister said police did not oppose the sale of legal highs per se, but the damage they could do in the hands of children was something people needed to be aware of.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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