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During the summer of 2013, NHPR’s newsroom took a closer look at crime in Manchester and how it affects the city and its residents. The largest city in a small state, in roughly equal proximity to Boston and the White Mountains, Manchester is in an unusual position, balancing small-city challenges with big-city problems.

Manchester City Officials Shut Down Three Stores Selling 'Spice'

Manchester Police Department

City officials in Manchester have shut down three convenience stores they say were selling a dangerous form of a synthetic drug called spice.

Police have responded to several overdoses at inner-city parks this week from people smoking the substance.

Police say it’s a particular brand of spice being sold in the city that’s causing problems.

The department responded to nine overdoses on Tuesday, and more than 20 on Monday.

The substance is labeled as incense, but Sgt. Brian O’Keefe says it’s sprayed with a synthetic compound similar to THC, the drug found in marijuana.

“Whatever is in that substance that they’re spraying the vegetative matter with, it’s causing the uptick in the overdoses.”

O’Keefe says of particular concern is the way the product is marketed toward teens.

He says Chief David Mara is involved in talks with city leaders to explore possibly banning the sale of the substance in Manchester.

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