Party drug ‘molly’ blamed for death of Colorado Springs teen

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DENVER -- The party drug known as "molly" is being blamed for the death of a teenager from Colorado Springs.

Megan Pacheco, 18, died Thursday morning, one week after she overdosed on "molly." Investigators say the drug Pacheco took also had traces of opiates, heroin and morphine.

"Molly" is known as MDMA. In 2011, the Drug Abuse Warning Network logged more than 22,000 emergency room visits nationally as a result of the drug.

“Molly” is popular among teenagers and young adults. It’s especially big with young adults who go to clubs. There’s not much of a difference between "molly" and Ecstasy, according to the Arapahoe House, a local drug and alcohol treatment center.

“The best comparison would be a hallucinogen and an amphetamine together,” Arthur Schut, CEO and president of Arapahoe House.

Schut said the drug produces closeness, emotional warmth and positive feelings.

“Molly” is taken orally, usually in the form of a capsule or tablet. "Molly" is slang for "molecular," referring to pure crystalline powder.

The drug usually lasts three to six hours once it’s taken. Users often will ingest additional doses when the first dose tapers off.

“It has a reputation more than any other set of drugs in terms of being highly impure and having other chemicals in it,” Schut said.

The biggest concern is "molly" is often cut with other drugs such as heroin and meth, which can quickly affect the body’s ability to regulate temperature.

“People can have exceedingly high temperatures and that can bring organ failure and death,” Schut said.

The long-term effects are just as dangerous.

“It can produce convulsions, all sorts of violent behavior in some people. The exact opposite of what it`s marketed to do,” Schut said.