Bowdoin man linked to bath salts episode arrested four days later

By Darcie Moore, Times Record
Posted Sept. 20, 2011, at 3:33 p.m.

BRUNSWICK, Maine — The Bowdoin man whose alleged use of a synthetic stimulant known as bath salts brought the Sagadahoc County Sheriff’s Department to his West Burrough Road residence Wednesday afternoon was arrested Sunday.

Chief Deputy Brett Strout said Monday that Shane Heathers, 34, was arrested at 11:50 a.m. Sunday in Brunswick. A Sagadahoc County warrant of arrest charges Heathers with criminal mischief and violation of conditions of release — all stemming from his vandalism of a home that belongs to a relative, according to Sagadahoc Sheriff Joel Merry.

Strout said Heathers was taken to Two Bridges Regional Jail, where he remained of Monday afternoon, according to the jail.

Merry told The Times Record on Thursday that Wednesday’s incident involving Heathers represented the first time his department had dealt with a person apparently under the influence of bath salts, a cocktail of artificial stimulants that often triggers violent and erratic behavior. Police intervention in cases of people using bath salts have been more prevalent in the Bangor area and central Maine.

Deputies who handled Wednesday’s call that an individual was out of control and under the influence of bath salts reported that Heathers had allegedly “turned his residence upside down,” and done a lot of damage, according to Merry. Deputies took Heathers into protective custody and transported him to a Brunswick hospital.

State and federal officials continue to seek stronger legal prohibitions against selling or possessing bath salts. Gov. Paul LePage last week called for stronger state laws against the substance. On Monday, U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, announced that she will co-sponsor legislation that would amend the federal Controlled Substances Act to make bath salts illegal in the United States.

“Although illegal in Maine and 31 other states, these harmful chemicals are not illegal under federal law and are readily available to anyone on the Internet and in stores across the country,” a release from Collins’ office states.

The stimulant products are sold in powder form under various brand names and are usually ingested by sniffing or snorting. Bath salts also can be taken orally, smoked or put into a solution and injected into veins.

Local law enforcement agencies continue to monitor bath salts incidents in other parts of the state, prepare to deal with local outbreaks and work to educate the public about dangers associated with the substance.

“You don’t know where it’s going to show up next, and what we want is to be able to provide enough education to the community so that we’re made aware of any instances of the use of and trafficking in the substance of bath salts,” Merry said.

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http://bangordailynews.com/2011/09/20/news/midcoast/bowdoin-man-linked-to-bath-salts-episode-arrested-four-days-later/ printed on September 20, 2014