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Man arrested for huffing gasoline in public library

Anthony Bartlett was arrested for inhaling gasoline at a public library Monday, Nov. 28, 2016. (Oklahoma City Police Department)

An Oklahoma man was arrested for allegedly huffing gasoline. Oklahoma City police say this happened inside a public library, but this is not the first time we've heard of someone huffing gasoline in public. Fox 25 wanted to know if this is on the rise.

The Oklahoma Center for Poison and Drug Information said they don't hear about incidents like this too often, but aren't too surprised. They say, people who inhale gasoline are using it to get high.

Monday afternoon, officers were called to Almonte Library for a man who was trespassing, but to their surprise, they found him at a computer with a strange substance in a bottle.

“He was arrested for inhaling harmful substance,” said Oklahoma City police officer, Megan Morgan. “Which was gasoline that inside a bottle which he was huffing while sitting in front of the computer.”

When officers asked for his name, he said he was Deadpool and his secret identity was Ryan Reynolds.

“The man was believed to be under the influence of gasoline and was also arrested for trespassing,” Morgan said.

This isn't the first time police arrested someone for sniffing gasoline. This past week, a man was taken into custody for huffing gasoline inside a motel lobby.

We wanted to know if there was a rise in people inhaling gasoline. Oklahoma Center for Poison and Drug Information managing director, Scott Schaeffer, said it's just another way for people to get high.

“A lot of people don't view it as a poisoning, when it actually is,” Schaeffer said.

Experts say when you take risk like huffing gasoline, you’re doing damage to your brain cells.

“When the vapors from gasoline, other hydrocortisone are inhaled, they go straight to the brain and it cause an effect very much like alcohol,” said Schaeffer. “Unfortunately, they do a great deal of damage to the brain even on a short term basis.”

But in the long term...

“They will sometimes develop heart problems, where they can just fall over and die,” Schaeffer said.

Schaeffer said kids who start out huffing are more likely to try other drugs. There's no specific way to tell if someone's has been inhaling, just a strong gasoline smell.

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