POLICE BEAT

Police: Bangor man on bath salts arrested after series of 911 hang-up calls

Posted July 08, 2011, at 10:07 p.m.

BANGOR, Maine — A Bangor man was arrested early Friday morning after he allegedly made a series of 911 hang-up calls from his cell phone.

Because the calls were made from a cell phone, emergency dispatchers were not able to provide police officers with specific locations to respond to, though they were able to trace the calls to general areas, Bangor police Sgt. Jim Buckley said Friday night.

The first call was place about 2 a.m. in the High Street area, the second around 3 a.m. in the Center Street area, and the third and final one in the Ohio Street area, which is where police officers found 30-year-old Anthony Barnes, Buckley said.

Barnes, who was found at 28 Ohio St., initially ran away when a police officer found him. The officer caught up with Barnes a short way up the street and arrested him without further incident, Buckley said.

Once in custody, Barnes apologized for making the calls, saying he made them accidentally, Buckley said.

“He said he was keeping his finger on the 911 button in case he was shot by the people chasing him with rifles,” Bangor police Sgt. Jim Buckley said Friday night, citing an arrest report. Buckley said that at the time of his arrest, Barnes thanked officers for arresting him because at least he would be safe.

Buckley said that Barnes admitted to having used “monkey dust,” a local term for bath salts, a designer drug that became illegal in Maine earlier this week.

Authorities say that bath salts usually contain mephedrone or Methylenedioxypyrovalerone, also known as MDPV. Police, doctors and emergency responders and others have reported signs of paranoia, hallucinations, convulsions and psychotic behavior in drug users.

Barnes, who was charged with making a false public alarm or report and with violating the conditions of release from an earlier arrest, remained at Penobscot County Jail on Friday night.

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