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Barnsley Man Dies Hours After Taking Legal High

Tuesday August 20 2013


DCI Mark Wilkie DCI Mark Wilkie


A BARNSLEY man has died hours after taking a so-called 'legal high'.

In what's thought to be one of the first cases in South Yorkshire, 41-year-old Stephen Lowe, of Queens Drive, was found by his partner, Leeanne Barton, last Saturday.

Police believed Mr Lowe had been at home with others the previous night when he smoked a substance called Exodus, which is sold as a herbal incense.

Det Chf Insp Mark Wilkie said it was the first case in Barnsley of a death being linked to a 'legal high'.

"Mr Lowe is the first person we're aware of who has taken something and ended up dead, even though we can't say he died because of that.

"The result of the post-mortem was inconclusive, but he's taken legal highs along with a cocktail of alcohol.

"We won't know the cause of death until we get the toxicology reports, but that can take weeks."

DCI Wilkie confirmed it was legal for shops to sell the product but they're concerned that they're not being used for their intended purpose.

"The government will become aware of them and will try to classify them and make them illegal, but up until then people can sell them and they're not doing anything wrong."

"We believe legal highs played a part in this man's death, and that Exodus was the potent one," he added. "It's unbelievable what some people will put into their bodies."