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article imageNew mother smoked 'bath salts' in maternity ward, attacks staff

By JohnThomas Didymus     Jul 6, 2012 in Crime
Altoona - A new mother was charged with smoking "Blizzard," a powerful form of the synthetic stimulants known as bath salts while still in the maternity ward of the Altoona Regional Hospital on June 17, two days after she gave birth.
According to the Altoona Mirror, Carla J. Murphy, 31, of 1902 Third Avenue,.was charged with aggravated assault and several drug counts after she stripped naked and attacked staff at the hospital. Hospital police were called to subdue the 31-year-old woman after she went berserk and rolled on the shower floor. She was incoherent when hospital staff tried to interrogate her.
According to the Altoona Mirror, she was recovering at the hospital on June 17, after she had delivered a baby.
Daily Mail reports that hospital staff first suspected she was ill when she began cursing, swearing and behaving in an aggresive manner. After hospital staff adjudged she was not of "sound mind or able to make her own decision," they attempted to hold her at the ward, but while they escorted her, she ran into the bathroom and began rolling naked on the shower floor.
When the hospital police arrived, they searched her bag and found drug paraphenelia, including a dismantled black pen with residue of a substance inside. When staff asked her what the substance was, she told them it was "Disco," a brand of bath salts, Daily Mail reports.
Hospital staff tried to calm her down but when they failed doctors administered an anti-psychotic drug called Haldol, Altoona Mirror reports. But before the drug took effect she became even more violent and continued to yell and flail her limbs.
NY Daily News reports that she tried to escape and when staff tried to stop her, she attacked a nurse, punching her in the nose. She kicked a police officer and attempted to bite him. The attack developed into a scuffle that spilled into the hospital hallway.
The hospital staff finally managed to handcuff her but she contineud struggling and kicking.
When finally, the anti-psychotic drug took effect, she was taken to Blair County prison on a probation violation because she already had an outstaning warrant, Daily Mail reports.
Police escorted a Blair County Children, Youth and Familes caseworker to inspect her residence on June 17 where they met her boyfriend, Michael W. Stewart, who led officers into her room. Police discovered drug parapernalia, including needles, aluminium foil, bath salts container and a broken glass bottle with brown residue in it, Altoona Mirror reports.
Stewart admitted Murphy was addicted to "Blizzard," but he said he thought she had stopped taking the drug. Police, however, charged him with posession of drug paraphernalia.
Murphy, according to Altoona Mirror, faces charges of "aggravated assault, simple assault, disorderly conduct, public drunkeness and harrassment as well as several drug counts including felony possession of a designer drug."
Stewart and Murphy will appear before the Magisterial District Judge Tod F. Kelly, on August 8, for preliminary hearing of their case.
According to Daily Mail, "bath salts" are stimulant drugs containing MPDV or ephedrine and can be inhaled or smoked. They include a range of synthetic substances many of which can be sold legally provided they are not marked as for human consumption. They induce violent, unpredictable behavior and terrifying hallucinations. There are known on the streets by a host of fanciful names such as "Ivory Wave, "Purple Wave," "Vanilla Sky," "Bliss" or "Blizzard"
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