At the end of every month, I scour the LexisNexis and Factiva news databases for stories about the criminal exploits of people who are allegedly high on the dissociative drug phencyclidine, or PCP. Urban legend maintains that a dose of PCP—also known as angel dust—can give you superstrength, or make you hunger for human flesh. These are exaggerations. That said, PCP can lower a user’s inhibitions in newsworthy fashion. To wit:
PCP is back in style. Hooray? A new government study found that emergency room visits for PCP-related incidents rose by more than 400 percent between 2005 and 2011. “This report is a wake-up call that this dangerous drug may be making a comeback in communities throughout the nation,” said the director of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, which performed the study. This is certainly bad news for communities throughout the nation, but it’s great news for crime bloggers who write monthly columns about PCP-addled weirdos.
World’s worst houseguest. When New York man Dennis “Bam” Hill decided to visit Philadelphia before Thanksgiving, it was only natural that he would stay with his friend Darryll Martin. But Martin’s generosity was flouted when, according to police, Hill became enraged late one night and threatened to kill Martin’s young daughters with some kitchen utensils. According to the Philadelphia Daily News, Hill was under the influence of PCP when he grabbed the girls with his “gargantuan mitts” and threatened their lives with the forks and the knives. Martin tried to reason with his friend, but that didn’t work, so he whacked him with a baseball bat, which did work. This should serve as a warning to all of us to avoid having houseguests, especially houseguests named “Bam” with gargantuan mitts.
Hellcab. When I’m feeling aimless and desperate, I like to drink a case of beer and cry myself to sleep. When Bronx man Robert Mizell was feeling “aimless and desperate” this fall, he allegedly pulled a gun on an NYC cabbie and demanded that the driver take him to Albany. We’ve all got different ways of coping, I guess. Mizell, who was indicted for the crime last month, made it as far as Tarrytown before the cabbie escaped; the Journal News reports that Mizell had “smoked PCP-laced marijuana” before embarking on the voyage. I’d like to briefly note that the Journal News article about this incident was written by Erik Shilling, a friend and former roommate of mine. I’m thrilled to see that Erik and I have both fulfilled our dreams of writing about whacked-out PCP users for a living. We made it, buddy!
I bite your knee, sir! This month’s naked-guy story comes from Manchester, Conn., where, according to Jesse Leavenworth at the Hartford Courant, cops found a naked, disoriented man named Jarees Robinson standing on a street corner. (According to police, Robinson later admitted that he had taken PCP.) After he was brought to a local hospital, Robinson became aggressive, allegedly going so far as to bite a police officer on the knee. Not to be a Monday-morning quarterback, but if this story is true, then Jarees Robinson could really use some lessons in biting. The knee is one of the top five worst body parts to bite: It’s not very fleshy, it’s hard to get to, and the person being bitten will likely retaliate by smashing his knee into your mouth, thus causing you more pain than you yourself delivered. If Robinson finds himself strung out on the mean streets of Manchester, he needs to go for an arm. And, just in case you were wondering, here are the other four worst body parts to maliciously bite: elbow (even less fleshy than the knee), armpit (hair gets in the way), foot (usually protected by a shoe), and teeth (redundant).
Please don’t Scream. An Allentown, Pa., teenager named Javier Humberto Toro was sentenced to between 10 and 20 years in prison after he was convicted of robbing three convenience stores while hopped up on a variety of illegal drugs, including PCP. To conceal his identity, Toro wore the same sort of scary mask used in the Scream films, probably hoping that police would end up pinning the crimes on Matthew Lillard. “He is truly a danger to society,” the judge said of Toro, likely worrying that the publicity surrounding his crimes might convince Wes Craven to make another horrible Scream movie.
PCP Story of the Month. According to police, a Dallas woman named Reshonda Fields smoked some PCP this November and went on a destructive joy ride that ended when her car smashed into a pole and caught on fire. Fields allegedly told the cops that “she had fun driving erratically,” which I’m sure she did. But a closer look at the situation reveals that Fields might deserve our sympathy instead of our scorn.
“I just had a bad day. My kids are testing me. My baby’s father won’t make him mind,” Fields said after she was arrested, according to NBCDFW.com. “I’m sorry. I don’t want to hurt nobody. I really don’t.” At one point or another, every mother has been pushed to the breaking point by her kids’ misbehavior and her partner’s apparent indifference. Sure, most women don’t proceed to allegedly smoke PCP and wreak havoc on the roadways, but, hey, not everyone can afford a trip to Rancho Relaxo. Fields is currently facing several criminal charges. What she really needs is a hug.
Previous Months in PCP: This Probably Isn’t What They Meant When They Promised Us Flying Cars; This Is What Happens When You Hide Liquid PCP in Your Shoe; An Alleged PCP User Was in an Ambulance. It Crashed. Here’s What Happened Next; The Guy Who Allegedly Had the Drug in His Sock and Asked Cops “Am I Dead?”; Firetruck Follies and the World’s Worst Sandwich; Car Crashes, Delusions of Divinity, and a Big Night in Monroe, La.; Naked Guys, Car Chases, and Big Jugs of Sweet Tea (That Are Full of PCP).