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North Huntingdon man charged a second time with huffing

| Saturday, Dec. 31, 2011

A North Huntingdon man who was awaiting sentencing for crashing his vehicle into a Greensburg store while inhaling a solvent has been charged again with huffing.

A Westmoreland County probation officer spotted Brian Erick Ross, 29, under the influence of a solvent and carrying an aerosol can on Dec. 13 near the day reporting center in Greensburg, county detectives allege.

Ross had been ordered to report to the probation center on South Maple Avenue in Greensburg while awaiting sentencing for his conviction in October on a third offense of being under the influence of a solvent, according to county court records.

Shortly before 1 p.m. Dec. 13, county probation officer Patrick Nuzzo received a call about a man behind a trash bin in the alley behind the day reporting center, according to court papers.

"Nuzzo observed Mr. Ross place an aerosol canister in his left jacket pocket," Detective Tony Marcocci wrote in the court papers. "Nuzzo was able to recognize that Mr. Ross was under the influence."

Authorities took the 12-ounce can of Ultra Duster, an industrial strength solvent often used to clean computers and computer parts, according to court papers.

In October, Judge Rita Hathaway convicted Ross of inhaling a solvent, other offenses related to illegal use of a solvent and hit-and-run from the Sept. 9, 2010, incident at the Family Dollar at the Greensburg Shopping Center.

Ross admitted inhaling the solvent shortly before his Ford Escort traveled through a concrete-block wall, crashed through a window and ended up about 10 feet from a cash register and within 2 to 3 feet of an employee, according to testimony during a preliminary hearing.

Ross is to be arraigned on the latest charge on Wednesday before Greensburg District Judge James Albert.

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