DENVER - A mother is suing a Colorado convenience store for selling her son a synthetic marijuana product that she says killed him.
Nicholas A. Colbert, 19, died after using Spice he bought from a Kwik Stop convenience store in Colorado Springs in September 2011, according to attorney David S. Woodruff.
Woodruff and his partners filed a lawsuit on behalf of Colbert's mother, Stephane Colbert.
"The suit is an effort to stop convenience stores, gas stations, and other retail outlets from selling deadly Spice and other synthetic drugs, which contain harmful, and often illegal, chemicals," Woodruff said in a statement sent to 7NEWS.
Woodruff said the lawsuit claims Kwik Stop store owners sold Spice to Nicholas in a bottle labeled "Mr. Smiley," and that the bottle contained chemicals that had been banned and were illegal in Colorado. Nicholas was found dead later that same evening, after smoking the Spice, Woodruff said.
"This 'fake marijuana' is being marketed and packaged with innocuous names and bright graphics to give the misleading impression that its use is harmless," Woodruff said.
Officials with the Rocky Mountain Poison Control Center told 7NEWS most of the drugs have not been tested on humans and were never meant to be ingested.
The substance was created in medical labs by a Clemson University researcher as a way to study the effects of marijuana on lab animals. It has a different molecular structure than marijuana, but was designed to stimulate the same receptors, according to the RMPCC.