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Man on Bath Salts Assaults Pennsylvania Trooper

LEBANON COUNTY, Pa. --

A Lebanon County man is accused of assaulting a state trooper while high on bath salts.

State police said they were called to Palm City Park in South Annville Township early Sunday because Gary Harris, 35, was behaving erratically.

When troopers arrived, they said Harris refused to listen to their commands and struggled with the two troopers, injuring one of them.

Bath salts are on the rise among young people looking for a new way to get high, according to numerous experts in the field.

News 8 talked with someone from Compass Mark, an information and referral service for drug and alcohol treatment, about how to spot the abuse of bath salts in someone and what the substance does to the body.

First, the signs that someone is using bath salts:

The person would look high and act as if he was under the influence. After using bath salts, he or she might suffer a huge crash, the Compass Mark representative said.

Bath salts also mimic the signs that are common to most drugs, including mood swings, change in dress and friends, a need for money and items missing, a drop in grades, a change in sleep patterns and trouble with relationships.

Second, what do bath salts do to your body?

Bath salts are both a stimulant and hallucinogenic, according to the Compass Mark representative, who added that people who use the substance have a lot of energy and do not sleep.

The representative also said that users can have chest pain, seizures, rapid heart beat and increased blood pressure.

People may also respond to the hallucinations, thinking they are not safe and take actions that may look violent.

Those under the influence of bath salts may also hurt themselves, are agitated and could act paranoid, the Compass Mark representative said.

The state Department of Health has a fact sheet on bath salts.

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