May 29th, 2012
08:42 AM ET

Reports: Miami 'zombie' attacker may have been using 'bath salts'

A naked man who chewed off the face of another man in what is being called a zombie-like attack may have been under the influence of "bath salts," a drug referred to as the new LSD, according to reports from CNN affiliates in Miami.

Why 'bath salts' are dangerous

The horrific attack occurred Saturday and was only stopped after a police officer shot the attacker several times, killing him.

'Zombie apocalypse' trending as bad news spreads quickly

Larry Vega witnessed the attack on Miami's MacArthur Causeway. He told CNN affiliate WSVN he saw one naked man chewing off the face of another naked man.

Rudy Eugene

"The guy was like tearing him to pieces with his mouth, so I told him, 'Get off!'" Vega told WSVN. "You know it's like the guy just kept eating the other guy away, like ripping his skin."

"It was just a blob of blood," WSVN quoted Vega as saying. "You couldn't really see, it was just blood all over the place."

Vega said he flagged down a passing police officer.

"When the officer approached him, told him to stop, pointed a gun at him, he turned around and growled like a wild animal and kept eating at the man's face," Fraternal Order of Police President Armando Aguilar told CNN affiliate WPLG.

The attacker was identified by Miami-Dade Police as 31-year-old Rudy Eugene. Miami-Dade referred CNN to Miami Police for all other details of the investigation.

Augilar said he suspects the attacker was under the influence of "bath salts." Four other drug use instances in Miami-Dade bear resemblances to Saturday's attack, he told WPLG.

"It causes them to go completely insane and become very violent" and take off their clothes, Augilar told WPLG.

Dr. Paul Adams, an emergency room physician at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, told CNN affiliate WFOR that the drug makes users delirious. They exhibit elevated temperatures and extreme physical strength, Adams said.

“I took care of a 150 pound individual who you would have thought he was 250 pounds,” WFOR quoted Adams as saying. “It took six security officers to restrain the individual.”

Adams said users have been known to use their jaws as weapons, according to WFOR.

According to a 2011 report from the National Institute of Drug Abuse, bath salts contain amphetamine-like chemicals.

"Doctors and clinicians at U.S. poison centers have indicated that ingesting or snorting 'bath salts' containing synthetic stimulants can cause chest pains, increased blood pressure, increased heart rate, agitation, hallucinations, extreme paranoia, and delusions," according to the NIDA report.

In October, the Drug Enforcement Administration made possession of the stimulants in bath salts, Mephedrone, 3,4 methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) and Methylone, illegal under an emergency order. The order lasts for a year with a possible six-month extension.

The stimulants have been placed under restrictions or banned in 37 states, according to a DEA press release.

The victim of Saturday's attack, whom police have not identified, was in critical condition at Jackson Memorial on Monday, according to the WPLG report. Augilar told WPLG that 75% to 80% of his face was missing.

Eugene had an arrest record, mostly misdemeanors, including a battery charge from when he was 16 that was later dropped, according to the Miami Herald.

He had been married but divorced in 2007, WPLG reported. His former wife told the station that Eugene had been violent toward her.

Homeless people near where the attack took place said Eugene was often seen around the area looking confused, according to WPLG.

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Filed under: Crime • Drugs • Florida
soundoff (972 Responses)
  1. B-rock

    . . .and people want to legalize drugs???

    May 29, 2012 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Floridian

      Hey, if drugs were legal this never would have happened. There were impurities and toxins in these drugs because there's no quality control. If the FDA inspected them and we had a safe place to use them under supervision, problem solved. I'd rather have legal drugs than food stamps.

      May 29, 2012 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      Better the drugs you know than the ones you don't. When was the last time you heard about someone on cocaine feasting on human flesh? Oh wait, NEVER. Some people are going to try and get high no matter what we do; why not at least give them pure products with studied effects so they don't go snorting "bath salts" or worse?

      May 29, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Louis

      Do you want to make all guns illegal when you see stories about people getting shot?

      May 29, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Syndrome Zed

      Yeah, they do, as do I. If the original forms of the drugs were legal – khat and marijuana anyway, then the synthetic versions – the bath salts (mephedrone, etc.) and K2 (a synthetic cannabinoid) wouldn't need to be made by people looking for "fun". You don't get these side effects from the originals – heck, you probably wouldn't get them from the synthetics if they were pure, and not made in bathtubs by idiots who learned their synthesis methods from some non-chemist's lame website, and who get their chemicals from the 7-11 and the hardware store.

      You'll never be able to stop the demand for recreational drugs (or booze), so it seems to me there are two choices – put out lethal versions of the drugs to kill all the users, or legalize and regulate as much as possible the original versions (the ones that don't require synthesis, just gardening) so no one is driven to creating these poorly-made synth versions.

      May 29, 2012 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nathan K

      Yes drugs.. what's wrong with pot? Bath salts apparently turn people into zombies.

      May 29, 2012 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
  2. DPatriot

    Wow , they just mention "it could be bath salts or drugs" , And the sheep take it , hook ,line ,and sinker . lol

    May 29, 2012 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Parfin Woodell

    Real LSD is great.
    I once went to the park and dropped some blotter
    and watched bees the size of footballs flying around.
    Later on the ride home on the subway,
    the floor melted and i could see the tracks.

    May 29, 2012 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse |
  4. DPatriot

    Who confirmed he was "on drugs" ? Speculation , no one knows

    May 29, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Debbie Childress

    These are not Zombies he was on bath salts and you should be afraid very much afraid .Bath salts are cheap and its not like PCP or LSD !

    May 29, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Liebster Welpe

    A little chianti please

    May 29, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  7. GriffenAngel

    The behavior displayed by this man is more indicative of PCP rather than methylenedioxypyrovalerone usage.

    May 29, 2012 at 1:40 pm | Report abuse |
  8. observer

    What I can't figure out is how these bath salts are still legal under the analog act, since they seem pretty close to meth/MDA/MDMA chemically. It's also totally ridiculous to compare them to LSD. They're a dissociative, dementia-inducing (not hallucination-inducing), violence-provoking drug. Like PCP, not LSD.

    May 29, 2012 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      MDA/MDMA is none-violent and nothing like Meth, nor are they dissociative, dementia-inducing. You are right PCP is.

      May 29, 2012 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jim

      Who cares? zombies bro zombies

      May 29, 2012 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Name*Stephanie

    Drugs. It's all fun and games until someone's face gets devoured. Just say no, please. It's just too dangerous. There aren't regulations on street drugs. Dealers can add what they want even in something as "simple" as marijuana. Too risky.

    May 29, 2012 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Me

    Like we don't have enough problems already......zombies!

    May 29, 2012 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
  11. John

    Zombies Apocalypse–its starting

    May 29, 2012 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • beowulf

      Why are bath salts called the "new LSD"? Might as well call it the "new beer." The pharmacological make-up of bath salts (not to mention its effect) is as close to LSD as it is to vitamin C. Ridiculous.

      May 29, 2012 at 2:13 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Jolgar

    Is this for real??

    May 29, 2012 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Bill

    Mike Tomlin?

    May 29, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Justin

      It's only a Zombie outbreak if the guy who's face was getting chewed off gets up and starts gnawing on someone else's face. Otherwise this is not a Zombie apocalypse anymore than it is a bed time story.

      May 29, 2012 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
  14. ben

    honestly this is the weirdest thing I've ever heard

    May 29, 2012 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
  15. shiningwizard

    It is not Bath Salts. This is Ground Zero of World War Z. Remember, this is the beginning of the outbreak.

    May 29, 2012 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
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