Has the “zombie apocalypse” come to Texas?
Reports surfaced Tuesday that a 22-year-old Waco man, Michael Daniel, ate parts of his family’s dog while the dog was still alive after smoking a type of synthetic marijuana, more commonly known as “K-2,” or “spice.” This gruesome incident, the latest in a string of similar cases involving dangerous drugs, evokes images of zombie horror films.
According to the Waco Tribune-Herald (subscription only), local police arrived at the home where Daniel resides on June 14. Sgt. W Patrick Swanton told the Tribune-Herald that the young man had allegedly assaulted several people there after telling them that he was on a “bad trip” from the K-2 drug.
Daniel reportedly got on all fours and followed a neighbor, “barking like a dog,” before choking his family’s 30 to 40 pound black dog (a Spaniel mix, the Global Grind reported) and biting away portions of the canine’s flesh and eating it. For this, Daniel is being charged with non-livestock animal cruelty - a felony because the animal died.
Swanton told the Tribune-Herald that Daniel was waiting for the police on the front porch, “holding the dead dog in his lap.” He had the pet’s blood all over his face and clothes.
Daniel was taken to a nearby hospital and arrested Monday at the Waco store where he works. He is being held at McLennan County Jail in lieu of $5,000 bond.
The DEA banned five chemicals used to produce K-2 in 2010. Calling these fake marijuana drugs “cannabimimetic agents,” the agency’s website warns that K-2 is “labeled as herbal incense to mask [its] intended purpose.”
The story of Michael Daniel is the first instance of a zombie-like attack in Texas, but similar stories have emerged recently - including the Maryland student who allegedly killed his roommate and ate parts of his brain and heart last month, Louisiana man Carl Jacqukneaux, who reportedly bit at his neighbor’s face , and of course, the infamous “Miami Zombie,” Rudy Eugene . Both Jacqukneaux and Eugene are believed to have been under the influence of “bath salts,” an LSD-like designer drug.
Village Voice blogger James King tried to make light of this horrifying news: “Given the recent spike in bizarre cannibal stories, we're chalking up the fact that Daniel didn't eat a human as a sign that the world's zombie problem is improving,” King wrote.
And at the Houston Press , Craig Malisow seemed disappointed in Daniel’s felony charge, since unfortunately there is no charge for “being the most cray-cray person ever in the history of the world.”
“That's it. We're done with these zombie attacks. Check please,” Malisow concluded.