April 24, 2018
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Driver charged in OUI, huffing paint fumes

Contributed | BDN
Contributed | BDN
Claude White. (Photo courtesy of Waldo County Jail) With Curtis story: Inhaler
By Abigail Curtis, BDN Staff

BELFAST, Maine — Local police stopped a motorcycle rider early Tuesday morning who was driving erratically and found that he was under the influence of paint fumes.

Claude H. White, 48, of Searsport was driving on the Route 1 bridge at 12:12 a.m. when Sgt. Walter Corey of the Belfast Police Department pulled him over, according to Chief Jeff Trafton.

White reportedly tried to hide a plastic bag filled with wet spray paint, but Corey found the bag. The rider’s symptoms apparently were similar to those of someone under the influence of alcohol, but a breath test showed that he hadn’t been drinking.

Those who huff, or abuse inhalants to get high, commonly spray paint into a bag and breathe in the fumes, Trafton said.

“[White’s] been convicted of this before,” Trafton said.

According to Trafton, White had spray paint on his hands and around his mouth. The photo taken of White when he was booked seems to show white or silver paint around his mouth.

He was arrested and charged with operating under the influence and unlawful use or possession of inhalants. White was taken to Waldo County Jail, where he was released on bail Tuesday morning, according to a jail official. He is scheduled to appear in Waldo County District Court on Thursday, July 29.

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