One of Britain’s youngest Spice addicts has revealed how he smokes the former legal high all day until he passes out.
Jamie Poulton, 13, began taking a variation of the powerful synthetic cannabis called Black Mamba two years ago after struggling with mental health issues.
His usage has skyrocketed in the past two months and he now begs his family and steals to fund for his £10 a day habit.
The teenager’s shocking addiction was revealed by his grandmother Teresa Poulton, 49, who wants to warn other families of the perils of the drug.
She said: “All he does is smoke the drug, it’s all he thinks about.
“He doesn’t eat, he can’t sleep, he just tries to block out everything else in his life by smoking Black Mamba.
“He pays for it by going round his mum’s house and asking her for £3.
“He then comes round mine and tells me his mum won’t give him any money so can he have £3.
“He says it’s for a KFC but I know it’s for drugs.
“If I don’t give it to him he kicks off and smashes the house up so I end up giving in.
“When he can’t get money things go missing. Anything he doesn’t break he steals.
“He’s sold every phone and bike he’s ever had.
“I bought him a tablet last Christmas but he’d sold it before I had the chance to wrap it up.”
Jamie’s addiction has progressively got worse since he began taking the drug aged 11 and he now gets high every day.
He frequently buys the drug on ‘tick’ and is often in trouble with drug dealers he owes money.
The addiction is part of his long standing problems including ADHD. Teresa also believes he has a personality disorder and schizophrenia.
She said his father also left when he was very young and his mother Jennifer Poulton, 33, was unable to care for him because of her own problems.
This has forced Teresa to bring him up along with her other 19-month-old granddaughter in her two-bed council flat in Lincoln, Lincs.
Jamie has also been expelled from three schools for bad behaviour.
He is currently going to a special school for disruptive pupils for an hour and a half a day.
He is also being supported with his drug problem by Addaction – a drug and alcohol addiction charity – but claims it’s not enough.
He said: “I take the drugs but it doesn’t help. It’s tearing me and my family apart.
“All I think about is drugs but I don’t want to think about that. Family comes before drugs but I need help and extra support.
“All Addaction does is give me tea and biscuits and take me to McDonald’s.”
Jamie says he became addicted to the drug, which he says is worse than heroin, after being sold it by adults on the street.
His addiction has caused him to put the drug before his family and he is now pleading for support to help him get his priorities right.
“Sometimes he takes all his clothes off and climbs drainpipes and lampposts. He smashes up my flat as well. It’s all just getting too much.
“It’s getting harder and harder and no one is doing anything. I look after him, feed him and clothe him. He can be such a lovely boy but then he gets angry and takes these drugs. He is desperate for help.
“I’m also bringing up my 19-month-old granddaughter now and it’s all getting too much. I’ve been depressed since I was 14 but all I do is good.
“Sometimes I just want to take myself and him in the river and end it all. I’m always there for everyone and no one is ever there for me.
“I try to be strong but I’m at the stage where I can’t take anymore.”
Black Mamba is a variation of Spice, a synthetic cannabinoid which has similar effects to natural cannabis.
However it is much more potent and reacts more strongly with the brain’s receptors.
Regular use can cause a relapse of mental health illness or increase the risk of developing a mental illness especially if someone has a family history of mental illness.
Side effects can include psychotic episodes, high fever, rapid pulse, sweating, agitation, confusion, convulsions, organ failure, coma and even death.
Jamie’s biological mum Jennifer Poulton, 33, said: “It’s the only thing he relies on and it’s breaking us down and tearing us apart.
“You see other legal high users killing themselves and I have nightmares that it’ll be my son in the gutter.”
Janice Spencer, assistant director of children’s services at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “We can’t comment on individual cases but we do work with partners where support is needed for young people who are in need of help.
“This includes with organisations like Addaction to deliver specialist services to young people who misuse drugs.”