Police raid businesses, charge man in connection to string of K2 overdoses

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COLUMBIA – Court documents filed in the recent string of K2 overdoses claim a suspect in the case mixed a flammable liquid with plant material to create the drugs.

Michael McTye, 45, of Columbia, is charged with manufacturing and distribution of synthetic cannabinoids. The name of the other suspect was not immediately available.

Columbia Police and the Boone County Sheriffs Department served three federal search warrants at businesses and residences in the area of Old Highway 63 and Monroe Street.

“We’ve served this afternoon in relation to the high number of overdoses Columbia has been experiencing,” said Special Operations Unit Lt. Lance Bolinger.

ATF spokesperson John Ham said there is no longer a risk to the community now that the warrants have been executed.

Bolinger, however, said there is still a risk for users.  

“The K2 poses a significant danger to the people that are using it because of the sheer number of medical calls that we’ve been responding to,” he said. “People get it and there’s not consistency in the product.”

The probable cause statement filed for McTye said police went to an "after-hours club" owned by McTye and his wife, below Venus Adult Store on Old Highway 63. They reported finding enough K2 for roughly 360 doses.

Deputies then searched McTye's home on Wyatt Lane, where they found the plant material, labeled "Damiana leaf," he allegedly used to make the K2, which he had bought locally. The also discovered a quantity of acetone, a chemical often found in cleaning solutions. The statement said the acetone was to be used as a solvent to combine other synthetic cannabinoid compounds and mixed with plant material to create K2.

McTye reportedly admitted to mixing and making the K2, and that the materials found at his house belonged to him.