Metro Police Warn Of Deadly Freon 'Huffing' Trend Targeting Teens

Monday, November 28th 2011, 10:56 pm
By: News 9

Police are warning parents about a dangerous activity that claimed the life of a metro teenager. Police believe a 13-year-old died from inhaling a chemical that can be found in nearly every household.

It's a deadly trend that is growing in popularity among teens. It's called huffing Freon, also known as "chasing the rat." The chemical will cause a high. Over Thanksgiving weekend it's believed to have caused a death.

11/27/2011 Related Story: 'Huffing' Freon Suspected In Midwest City Teen's Death

It started with a 911 call from a father to report his son missing. During that call, a parent's worst nightmare came true.

"He's dead," said a frantic father to a 911 operator. "His eyes are open. His lips are blue."

Family members found 13-year-old Trey King's body six hours after he went missing.

"It appears that the child probably died from huffing Freon," said Brandon Clabes, Midwest City Police Chief.

11/28/2011 Related Story: Evidence Shows Midwest City Teen Found Dead Was 'Huffing' Freon

Shortly after 6 p.m. Friday, Midwest City Police found King's body lying in a neighbor's yard near an air conditioning unit. The death baffled police.

"I'm pretty naïve to this," said Clabes. "I had never heard about [huffing Freon] before Friday night."

Videos showing people huffing Freon can be found online. Police believe more and more teens are learning how to huff Freon from the Internet.

"With the age of social media and Internet access, people are doing bad things that they shouldn't be doing because they're learning it from the Internet," said Clabes.

Police said Freon is commonly huffed from the air conditioning unit from depressing a valve to create a gas leak.

The American Association of Poison Control said more than 2,000 people have been sent to the hospital from huffing Freon since 2009.

A memorial service for Trey King will be held on Thursday at 12:30 at Nicoma Park Middle School.