OZARK, Mo., March 25 (UPI) -- A Missouri sheriff's office is drawing attention -- and suspicion -- with a Facebook post asking meth users to bring in their drugs to be screened for hepatitis and staph.
The Christian County Sheriff's Office authored a straight-faced Facebook post featuring "breaking information" that Southwest Missouri's methamphetamine supply from Texas was "possibly contanimated with hepatitus and staph."
The post reads:
"If you have recently purchased, acquired, or made Meth in Southwest Missouri the Christian County Sheriffs Office is requesting you seek assistance. Other Police/Sheriffs Offices in the state have seen positive results coming from Meth screening.
Our Office is stepping up as a screening/collection point. Please bring your Meth to the Christian County Sheriffs Office at 110 W Elm inside the Justice Center on the square in Ozark to have it screened. If a positive test is detected using our test ampules, a 100% safe collection will take place by our trained Deputies.
DO NOT USE IT until it's been checked for possible Hep and Staph contamination!"
Despite the serious tone of the post, most commenters seemed convinced the message was nothing more than a tongue-in-cheek trick to get meth users to turn themselves in to police.
The interpretation was supposed by James Keith, chief communications officer with the Bexar County Sheriff's Department in Texas.
"First I heard of it," he told The Kansas City Star of contaminated meth coming from Texas.
Doug Younger of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation said meth users expecting their products to be tested and then returned to them would be sorely disappointed.
"They can't give it back to you, because they'd be guilty of distribution," Younger said. "We can't distribute drugs."
Keith said the lack of hepatitus or staph does not make meth safe.
"Meth itself is made up of contaminates -- it's harmful to your health, period," Keith said. "And it's not necessarily something you are going to traffic from multiple states; it can be made and produced anywhere. Our meth is no more special than Missouri or Kansas meth."