Woman Addicted To Sniffing Gas Arrested For Endangering Lives

Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Victoria Daniels
Victoria Daniels

A Chattanooga woman was arrested on Wednesday in connection with a fire on March 29 at the Mountain Brook Apartments.

Captain Craig Haney with Quint 17 said he and other firefighters noticed the strong smell of gasoline in the apartment where the fire occurred. Captain Anthony Moore with the Fire Investigation Division was called in to investigate. Captain Moore said there was evidence that one of the two occupants had been sniffing, or “huffing” gasoline in the apartment’s bathroom.

Details are being obtained at this point, but the person sniffing the gas apparently used a cigarette lighter or lit a match in the bathroom. With the room full of gas fumes, a fire erupted. Miraculously, the two occupants in the apartment were not injured. Chattanooga firefighters responded quickly and were able to contain the blaze to just one apartment unit. The loss was estimated at $75,000.

The investigation led to today’s arrest of Victoria Daniels, 24. Captain Moore said that after the fire on March 29, Ms. Daniels and her husband were evicted from Mountain Brook Apartments and were staying at the HomeAway Extended Stay Studios on Northpoint Boulevard in Hixson.

As Captain Moore and fellow investigator Henry McElvain approached the room Wednesday morning, they could smell gas. Ms. Daniels refused to answer the door, so the investigators entered through a window and apprehended her. While inside, they found two one-gallon bleach containers full of gas inside the motel room.

With the assistance of Chattanooga police, the fire investigators transported Ms. Daniels to the Fire Administration Building for questioning. Not long after they left with the suspect, Extended Stay motel employees found a diaper bag that contained two one-gallon jugs of gas.

Captain Moore said Ms. Daniels never admitted to anything and refused to cooperate with the investigation. Around noon on Wednesday, Captain Moore charged Ms. Daniels with six counts of reckless endangerment. That charge stems from the danger the other residents were exposed to when Ms. Daniels’ gas sniffing led to the fire at Mountain Brooks Apartments.

Chattanooga police transported Ms. Daniels to the county jail for booking.

Officials said, "Apparently, sniffing gas is another way to get a cheap “high,” though the practice is fraught with danger. It’s not only extremely dangerous to the user’s health; the gas presents the very real danger of a fire or explosion."

The investigation related to this incident is ongoing.



City Council To Hear 4 Short Term Vacation Rental Appeals On May 8

The City Council will hear four short term vacation rental appeals on May 8, City Attorney Wade Hinton said. Under the new home rental rules, when one or more neighbors objects to a proposed rental the council must decide if it is to be allowed. The hearings will be at the regular 6 p.m. council meeting. Each side will be given nine minutes for their presentations. City ... (click for more)

2 Police Officers Describe Shootout With Man Outside East Chattanooga Store

Two city police officers on Tuesday described a shootout with a man with a gun outside Sandy's Mini Market in East Chattanooga. Curtis Brown, who was 34 at the time of the July 11, 2016, incident, is standing trial on charges of attempted murder and gun charges in the courtroom of Judge Tom Greenholtz. Stephen Huckabee, who left soon after the incident to work with a police ... (click for more)

Why Can't Someone Unstop The Water Buildup Problem At The I-24 Cummings Highway Exit? - And Response

Exit 174 on westbound Interstate 24 is closed again as is the westbound entrance ramp. Cummings Highway is shut as well. I inquired at TDOT on Dec. 28, 2015, why this continues to happen. The engineer’s response was that the drain from ground west of the interstate runs under private land and cover over it has caused that pipe to collapse. Obviously flow still goes through, ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Corker And ‘The Code’

Of all the vows, pledges, and bonds born unto the human race, nothing overrides “The Code.” It is an unwritten but deeply important knowledge that men should abide with equal respect, fierce loyalty, and chivalrous understanding of one another. For example, The Code dictates you must not and can never date a good friend’s ex-girlfriend, or ex-wife. Rather, you respect your friend ... (click for more)

Moc Golfers Tied For 2nd at SoCon Championships

It was a cold, miserable, soggy day at Pinehurst No. 9 for the second round of the Southern Conference Men’s Golf Championships. It showed for the Chattanooga Mocs as they dropped into a tie for second with ETSU at 594. “We got off to a great start over the first three or four holes and I thought this could be a really good day,” Coach Mark Guhne began. “Then we started to ... (click for more)

Lookouts Drop Double Header To First-Place Jackson Generals Monday

Jackson, TN.- The Jackson Generals are running away with the Southern League North division's first-half title with a 15-2 record. On Monday, they won the second and third games of their series against the Chattanooga Lookouts with a 7-0 shutout in Game One, and a come-from-behind 7-6 walk-off win in Game Two. A year ago, Zack Littell went 19-1 between two levels and three teams. ... (click for more)