PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The lawyer for the man accused of carjacking a woman is blaming a drug available online.

Jay Mendenhall was ordered to stand trial in the carjacking of a woman who was with her children at FunFest in Harmar. He allegedly pulled a knife on the woman and forced her out of her car.

At a hearing Monday, his lawyer said Mendenhall was under the influence of a drug called MEO-3-PCP. More commonly, it’s called 3-MeO-PCP.

Experts say it comes from Asia and offers a longer lasting effect than PCP and is much more prone to cause hallucinations.

A local man who is getting help for drug abuse at Gateway Rehab in Beaver County says he felt invincible when he tried it.

“I felt I could do anything, but there were definitely some points where I can say, I don’t remember too much about the night,” said the man whom KDKA agreed not to identify.

The lawyer in the carjacking case claims his client, Jay Mendenhall, took the same drug and doesn’t remember committing a crime.

“Barely remembers seeing the woman, and the defendant is very upset that she put this woman through that,” said attorney Bob Stewart.

The drug 3-MeO-PCP is available online because it’s supposed to be used as a research chemical, but Dr. Neil Capretto at Gateway Rehab says it’s become part of the new and growing group of designer drugs.

“These are not intended for human consumption, but people use them for human consumption and often have very bad outcomes with them,” said Dr. Capretto.

“When someone ingests one of these chemicals, it’s literally like playing Russian roulette because you’re not sure what you’re getting and you’re not sure how it’s going to affect you.”

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David Highfield