News & Events

Arms of an Angel continues to raise funds for 4th Police Dog


 The fundraising has begun for a 4th dog.  Each police dog costs about  $18,000. We have one police dog in service for the Mt Vernon Police department. The second police dog is going to join the police department this spring. Another Service Dog will be joining the Sheriff Department this spring also. Watch for these fund raising jars all over town. Also a BIG Thank You to Amanda Rogers Amanda Rogers Ondick of the Complete Care Animal Hospital, 999 Harcourt Road, for donating vet services for the life of the 1st dog.

This is our town and this is a community-wide project/campaign. We are challenging schools to have fundraisers to get the kids involved. We'll be announcing more details on our facebook page.

How to Donate


 Go to the website of Community Foundation of Knox County and Mount Vernon:
On the right hand side, there's a large DONATE NOW button. Click that. The second fund you see is "Arms of an Angel Foundation Police Dog Campaign". Click that. Then go to the right and click "Continue". Put in the amount. (do not add a designation). Add a comment if you'd like, such as, in honor of _______________. Then click "Continue" and follow the instructions to continue to pay by credit card or direct withdraw from an account.


 To pay by check: Make Check out to Arms of an Angel Foundation. In the subject line, put in "Dog Fund", and mail to Arms of an Angel Foundation, 1485 Yauger Road, Mount Vernon, OH 43050. We will then deposit it in to the Community Foundation and you will get proper tax receipt. Checks can also be dropped off at 1485 Yauger Road (Real Living office) or at the main branch of First Knox National Bank, 1 S. Main St.


Cash donations can be made at any of the collection at local merchants all over Mount Vernon. List of local merchant locations will be forthcoming.This is a community-wide project. This is OUR TOWN - OUR DOG. Let's help take our community back by supporting law enforcement in the fight against drugs and crime. Goal is $18,000  for our 4th Police Dog. 


Arms of an Angel Honored at Bill Signing!

In July, 2011, we were honored to be invited by State Rep. Margaret Ann Ruhl, to the signing of the Spice/Bath Salts Bill Signing. But the honor was even more eventful when Governor John Kasich, said, "Dave and Hilari, I want you right behind me for the signing." Then, he started signing and paused, turning around and handed the pen to Dave Culbertson and asked Dave to put the period after the governor's middle inital, and then had Hilari Culbertson, Dave's daughter dot the "i" in Kasich. They also were given one of the pens to keep. A very emotional time, as Governor Kasich hugged both Dave and Hilari and asked how we were doing after losing Carl and how he appreciated our efforts to help others avoid drugs. And he hugged Hilari extra long, as she was sobbing...quoted scripture and shared how he lost his parents to a drunk driver. Very emotional, and memorable. Thanks Margaret Ann Ruhl & Thanks Governor Kasich! 

PARENTS BE WARNED! 2C-I or "Smiles", Synthetic Killer Drug

In 2012, witnesses described the 17-year-old boy as "shaking, growling, foaming at the mouth." According to police reports, Elijah Stai was at a McDonald's with his friend when he began to feel ill. Soon after, he "started to smash his head against the ground" and began acting "possessed," according to a witness. Two hours later, he had stopped breathing.

The Grand Forks, North Dakota teenager's fatal overdose has been blamed on a drug called 2C-I. The night before Stai's overdose, another area teen, Christian Bjerk, 18, was found face down on a sidewalk. His death was also linked to the drug.

2C-I--known by its eerie street name "Smiles"--has become a serious problem in the Grand Forks area, according to local police. Overdoses of the drug have also be reported in Indiana and Minnesota. But if the internet is any indication, Smiles is surfacing in many parts of the country.

"At the moment I am completely and fully submerged, if you can't tell by my eyes, in a psychedelic world known as 2C-I," says a man who appears to be in his late teens or early 20s on a YouTube video posted back in October. His pupils are dilated. He struggles to formulate a description of what he's feeling--it's hard to tell if its because his experience is profound or if his speech skills are simply blunted. He's one of dozens of users providing Youtube "reports" of their experiences on the synthetic drug.

Smile's effects have been called a combination of MDMA and LSD, only far more potent. Users have reported a speedy charge along with intense visual and aural hallucinations that can last anywhere from hours to days.

"At first I'd think something was extremely beautiful and then it look really strange," another user says in a recorded online account."I looked at my girlfriend's face for a minute and it was pitch black…the black started dripping out of her eye."

Because the drug is relatively new--it first surfaced around 2003 in European party scenes and only recently made its way to the states--the most readily accessible information about 2C-I comes from user accounts, many of which detail frightening experiences.

Elijah Stai's fatal overdose has prompted a crackdown on the drug in North Dakota.

On an internet forum one user describes the high as a "roller coaster ride through hell," while another warns "do not drive on this drug," after recounting his own failed attempt on the roadway.

Over the past few years, synthetic drugs like K-2, Spice and Bath Salts, have become increasing popular with teenagers and young adults. Their ingredients are relatively easy to obtain and until recently, they weren't classified as illegal substances. But as they come under legal scrutiny, one by one, they've triggered a domino effect of newer, altered, and more potent versions.

"I think [the drugs] just keep changing to try to circumvent the law," Lindsay Wold, a detective with the Grand Forks police department, told Yahoo Shine. "Anytime we try to figure something out, it changes." Since July, her department has launched an awareness campaign in an effort to crack down on 2C-I's growing popularity with teens and young adults in the area. While reports of overdoses have increased, Wold says it's difficult to measure it's growth in numbers.

According data obtained by the American Association of Poison Control half of those exposed to 2C-I in 2011 were teenagers. That statistic was before two fatalities and multiple overdoses were linked to the drug in North Dakota.

"The unfortunate thing is if kids who are overdosing on 2C-I go in to the hospital with a physical problem, a lot of times they can't test for it so it doesn't show up as a drug overdose," says Wold.

The fact that 2C-I is new and untraceable in standard drug tests makes it more of a challenge for doctors to treat. It also contributes to drug's growing popularity among high school and college-age kids.

"Synthetic drugs don't generally show up on drug tests and that's made it popular with young adults, as well as people entering the military, college athletes, or anyone who gets tested for drugs," Barbara Carreno, a spokesperson for the Drug Enforcement Agency, tells Shine.

2C-I may be undetected in drug tests, but it's effects are evident in emergency rooms.

According to James Mowry, the director of Indiana's Poison Control Center, 2-CI overdoses have been known to cause seizures, kidney failure, and fatally high blood pressure.

"They do something that is called 'uncoupling." Mowry told an Indianapolis news station this month. "Basically, their muscles get to the point they cannot uncontract, so they sort of get rigid and then your temperature goes up really high and if you don't treat them really aggressively, those people usually end up dying."

In July, the DEA announced Operation Log Jam, the first nationwide coordinated US Law enforcement strike specifically targeting designer synthetic drugs. That same month, 2C-I was classified as a Schedule 1 subtance, making possession and distribution of the drug illegal. Those caught distributing even a small amount are facing serious criminal charges. Stai's friend, who allegedly obtained the drug that caused his overdose, has been charged with third degree murder.

While the drug's potential for overdose is apparent, the specific cases of fatalities are confounding. According to one site designed as a "fact sheet" for users, the dosage of the drug, which also comes as a liquid or a pill, is difficult to measure in powder form. When users snort the drug they could end up taking more than they realize, prompting an overdose. But in the case of Stai, the powder wasn't snorted, but melted into a chocolate bar and eaten.Some speculate those "hobby chemists"--making the drug using powders shipped from China, acetone and plant-based materials--are to blame for concocting particularly strong or toxic batches.

"Anybody with a little money to front can import chemicals, mix, and sell it," says Carreno. "Many of these types of drugs were originally designed for research to be used on animals, not people." In fact, 2C-I was first synthesized by Alexander Shulgin, a psychopharmacologist and scientific researcher. He's responsible for identifying the chemical make-up of the so-called "2C" family, a group of hyper-potent psychedelic synthetics. In 2011, 2C-E, a sister drug to 2C-I, was blamed for the death of a Minnesota teenager and the overdose of 11 others.

Because of his research, Shulgin has become an unintentional icon of the synthetic drug movement, and his formulas have been reprinted, and reduced to plain language, on drug-related web forums.

"Drugs used to take longer to get around but now with the internet they can spread by word of mouth online," says Carreno. If drugs like Smiles can be as viral as an internet meme, they have a similarly brief life-span. Already, a newer, re-booted version of the drug is cropping up on the other side of the planet, and by early accounts it's terrifying.

The new drug called 25b-Nbome, is a derivative of 2C-I, that's sold in tab form. This past month, the drug has been linked to the non-fatal overdoses of two young adults in Perth, Australia. It's also been blamed for the death of a young man in the same area, who died after repeatedly slamming his body into trees and power line poles while