CONWAY, SC (WBTW) – As the opioid epidemic continues to impact South Carolina, Horry County police are seeing heroin in pill form on the streets for the first time.
“Heroin found in gel caps seems to be a new trend,” Mikayla Moskov, spokesperson for the Horry County Police Department said.
Police found heroin pills for the first time during a drug bust earlier this month, where they arrested and charged 21-year-old Myrtle Beach resident, Caleb Sexton with four counts of possession with intent to distribute heroin and one count of unlawful carry of a weapon.
It’s the first time Horry County police have seized heroin gel caps, and they say other departments in the country are coming across them too.
“We’re always concerned when we see new forms of heroin introduced in the community because it means that it’s still a very prevalent issue here. The more forms there are, the more chances there are that people will have contact with them,” Moskov said.
Police say it’s easy for dealers to use gel capsules to disguise illicit drugs.
Sometimes heroin pills are laced with other drugs like the opioid, fentanyl.
“When we do see this sort of scenario with heroin in gel capsules, it does create more of an opportunity for things to be combined,” Moskov said.
However, heroin isn’t the only drug Horry County police are seeing in pill form. They say dealers can press meth into pills and will sometimes sell them as ecstasy.
Police worry the new pill trend could put more people at risk of taking something they did not intend to.
“When it comes to any sort of medication or pills, we want people to be aware of what they’re putting in their mouth and what they’re consuming. Just because it looks like one type of item doesn’t necessarily mean it is that item,” Moskov said.