By Dan Nienaber
---- — MANKATO — Mankato police suspect an illegal drug sold in blue packages with drawings of gold or silver crowns could be responsible for the deaths of two young Mankato residents.
One of the packages was found at a Glenwood Avenue residence Wednesday evening. Police had been called to the house for a report of a 22-year-old man who died.
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A second package was found at an East Pleasant Street house Saturday morning. The house is owned by the mother of a 17-year-old girl who was taken off life support Monday.
Both packages were 2" wide and 2" long. Department of Public Safety Director Todd Miller said investigators aren't positive about a connection at this point, but they suspect the drugs inside the packages could have caused the deaths.
"We believe these baggies may have contained a substance in a pill or powder form, possibly synthetic LSD or synthetic cocaine, commonly called 2-C," Miller said. "We are concerned there may be more of this potentially deadly substance out there and ask that anyone with knowledge of this substance contact the Mankato Department of Public Safety immediately by calling 911."
Miller also said anyone in possession of the substance or packaging should contact police immediately because they are attempting to find the source of the drug. If anyone wants to drop the packages and drugs off anonymously, the drug drop boxes at the downtown Public Safety Center or the Blue Earth County Justice Center can be used.
"Do not consume it and do not sell it or provide it to anyone," Miller said. "Through investigation, anyone found to sell or provide this substance to another person, and if that person dies, could be charged with homicide."
The East Pleasant Street house where one of the packages was found is owned by Anna Moses. Miller said police responding to the house found a 17-year-old girl who was having a seizure. She was transported to the Mankato hospital by ambulance and later transferred to a hospital in the Twin Cities.
Police didn't release the victim's name, but Mankato Area Public schools sent an email to parents Tuesday saying Anna Moses' daughter, Chloe Moses, had been taken off of life support Monday. Chloe Moses was a junior at West High School.
"It is with great sadness that I must inform you of the passing of one of our students in the Mankato West High School community, junior Chloe Moses, who was removed from life support on Monday around 4:10 p.m.," the email said. "Our deepest sympathy goes out to Chloe's friends and family.
"Chloe touched many lives here at Mankato West High School and students deal with grief in many different ways. We ask that parents be alert and observant of the needs of their child who may desire to talk with someone about their feelings."