6 sickened in search, police believe unknown drug to blame


JASPER, Ga. (AP) – A north Georgia store owner has been arrested after six people got sick during a drug search.

Local news outlets report a drug task force was searching the A-1 Smoke Shop in Jasper on Friday when a detective opened a container and began to feel dizzy and vomited, exhibiting high blood pressure.

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Another detective, a drug task force agent, two emergency services personnel and a store employee were also treated for symptoms. Officials believe they found a narcotic, but are testing to identify it.

Hazardous materials crews were called in to take samples and decontaminate.

All five people sent to the hospital have recovered and were released.

Store owner Atulkumar J. Patel was arrested on charges of possessing a controlled substance with intent to distribute and distributing nitrous oxide.

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