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3 Stores Shut Down For Allegedly Selling Illegal Relaxation Shots

3 Stores Shut Down For Allegedly Selling Illegal Relaxation Shots

CREATED Mar 18, 2014

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Three convenience stores in Nashville were shut down Monday afternoon for allegedly selling relaxation shots that contain illegal substances.

Officials with the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department said the stores were declared public nuisances and padlocked by order of the court. They included Discount Tobacco & Beer on Robinson Road, Madison Discount Tobacco & Beer on N. Gallatin Pike, and Litton's Corner Market on Gallatin Pike.

Police said the three markets were selling bottles of product such as "Viva Zen," "Mr. Smiley Kratom Relaxation Shot," and "Mr. Smiley Euphoria Party Shot" for about $10 per bottle.

A TBI analysis of the liquids revealed they contained the chemical Mitragynine, a psychoactive agent that mimics the effects of opiates ranging from sedation to pain reduction to intense euphoria.  Mitragynine has also been found to cause a host of opiate side effects, including nausea, dizziness, constipation, and in the worst cases, hallucinations and delusions.

As the padlocking orders were being executed, detectives learned that two Nashville wholesalers were storing significant quantities of the substance.  Nearly 4,000 bottles were seized this afternoon from Rum Wholesale on Dickerson Pike and FAB Wholesale on Fernco Drive.

The Tennessee General Assembly in 2013 declared Mitragynine and chemicals like it to be illegal and made it a crime to manufacture, distribute or sell any product containing such substances.

Police said they're concerned young people may purchase the products, not knowing their specific contents. 

Law enforcement officials said these types of crackdowns better protect the community from illegal and dangerous synthetic drugs. 

"If it doesn't come from a manufacturer you can identify... you don't know the source, you don't know the chemical compounds in there, you don't know the mixture," said Chief Steve Anderson. "So someone could very easily overdose on something like this." 

The owners of the stores have been scheduled to appear before a judge on March 24. The stores will remain closed, pending legal proceedings.