Plymouth Police Find Wanted Suspect, Meth Lab, Make Seven Arrests


A Plymouth Police Officer who hoped to serve one felony warrant at a Garro Street residence Wednesday night ended up taking seven people to jail and busting a meth lab.

Travis W. Gibson, 23, of Plymouth, was the subject of the warrant, which charges him with burglary, residential entry and dealing, delivering and manufacturing methamphetamine. A search of the residence turned up an illegal drug lab in the trunk of Gibson’s car, according to the Plymouth Police. Gibson now faces additional charges. Continue reading

Marshall County Community Encouraged to Report Meth, Child Abuse

Community members in Marshall County are encouraged to notify the Marshall County Sheriff’s Department and the Indiana Department of Child Services of incidents of suspected methamphetamine production and use. Marshall County ranks high in meth abusers and meth labs. There is also a rise in illegal prescription drug use in the area.

Marshall County ranked ninth in the state for most labs seized with 42.

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Plymouth Mayor to Testify on Pseudoephedrine Limits

Plymouth Mayor Mark SenterAn area mayor is set to speak to state lawmakers about the effects of methamphetamine manufacture and use on his community. Plymouth Mayor Mark Senter will speak in favor of annual limits on ephedrine and pseudoephedrine sales. They are the main ingredient in many cold and allergy medications as well as in the production of methamphetamine. A bill pending in the House would set an annual limit on how much pseudoephedrine an individual can purchase. The current individual purchase limit is 7.2 grams per month, or 86.4 grams per year. The proposal before the House Courts and Criminal Code Committee would cap annual purchases at 61 grams per year for a consumer. It has already passed the Senate. Senter is scheduled to testify before the committee tomorrow in Indianapolis. He’s seen firsthand the effects of methamphetamine. Senter is a retired state trooper who spent five of his 28 years on the force as a member of the ISP Clandestine Lab Team.

Plymouth warrant search yields multiple meth labs, four arrests


Four people are jailed in Marshall County after police there reportedly found multiple active meth labs and other evidence of drug activity at a Plymouth home. Plymouth and Marshall County Police accompanied by Indiana State Police Troopers executed a search warrant at a home in the 1,000 block of North Plum Street last night and arrested three women and a man. Members of the ISP Clandestine Lab Team spent several hours there cleaning up bags of trash labs and materials used in the manufacture of meth. Authorities say details will be released later today.

Starke County Sheriff’s Deputies Bust Meth Lab

Starke County Sheriff's Deputies reportedly found a meth lab inside this rural Knox home.
Starke County Sheriff’s Deputies reportedly found a meth lab inside this rural Knox home.

Starke County Sheriff’s Deputies arrested a man and a woman after reportedly busting a meth lab at a home near Round Lake where a toddler was present. Johnny Mullens and Amber Lain were arrested last Friday after officers served a search warrant for narcotics at a trailer on 200 E. south of Toto Road in Knox and found methamphetamine, precursors used in its manufacture, marijuana, syringes and an active meth lab within reach of a three-year-old male child, according to the arrest report. Officers also found $2,100 in a safe, which was confiscated. Mullens and Lain both face charges of dealing methamphetamine and neglect of a dependent. Mullens is also looking at charges of possession of marijuana and possession of paraphernalia.

Plymouth Couple Jailed Following Meth Lab Discovery

A Plymouth couple is jailed without bond after a police officer reportedly found a meth lab in their vehicle during a traffic stop. Roy A. Atkins, 35, and his wife Trudi A. Atkins, 32, were arrested by Plymouth Police Thursday afternoon in the parking lot of a store at Oak Drive and Jefferson Street. The officer who stopped their vehicle noted a strong chemical smell, according to the arrest report. A search turned up an active meth lab and numerous other meth-related items in the back.

Rochester man jailed for using fake ID to buy meth precursors

James L. Foster
James L. Foster

A Rochester man police say used a dead man’s driver’s license to buy pseudoephedrine faces identity deception charges. James L. Foster, 56, used a driver’s license issued to Paul Bennett to obtain pseudoephedrine, according to authorities. Bennett died in 2010, and somehow Foster got obtained his driver’s license. The two men have similar attributes. Pseudoephedrine is one of the main ingredients in the manufacture of methamphetamine. State law limits sales of cold medications containing pseudoephedrine in an attempt to curb meth production. Court records indicate Foster displayed Bennett’s license while signing for pseudoephedrine on four separate occasions between June 15 and Dec. 29, 2012, at a Fulton County pharmacy.

Citizens are encouraged to report suspected methamphetamine activity by calling the anonymous Indiana State Police Methamphetamine Tip Line at 1-800-453-4756.

Marshall County meth suspects jailed without bond

Mary Perren

A Marshall County man and woman are jailed without bond after police found multiple meth labs in their Argos home. Officers with the Undercover Narcotics Investigation Team, Indiana State Police and Marshall County Sheriff’s Office arrested 43-year-old David Howe and 35-year-old Kristi Messick-Eswick, also known as Kristi Miller following a Monday search of their residence on Hickory Road. Their initial hearing in Marshall Superior Court is set for March 12. Anyone with information about illegal drug activity in Marshall County is urged to call the anonymous tip line at1-800-899-0842.

Electronic Database Effectively Hinders Methamphetamine Production

A nonprofit group says an electronic database used by Indiana pharmacists and police to track sales of cold medicines that can be used to produce methamphetamine blocked the sale of more than 57,000 boxes of medicine containing pseudoephedrine during the first six months of 2012.

The Lutherville, Md.-based National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators says data released by the National Precursor Log Exchange shows the system may have kept more than 132,000 grams of pseudoephedrine from being diverted by meth cookers.

A law that took effect Jan. 1 requires retailers selling ephedrine and pseudoephedrine to enter information about buyers and their purchases in the National Precursor Log Exchange. The system issues “stop-sale” alerts if buyers try to purchase more than the allowable limit within a 30-day period.

Knox Man Arrested On Methamphetamine-Related Charges

Knox City Police officers arrested a Knox man Thursday on methamphetamine-related charges after executing an arrest warrant.

Police learned of the whereabouts of Anthony Clemons and confirmed that he had an active arrest warrant for Failure to Appear on narcotics-related charges in Starke Circuit Court. Police arrived at the residence and asked the homeowner if Clemons was there. He was seen on a bed in the home and was ordered to surrender to police before being taken into custody without incident.

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Methamphetamine Prevalence In Starke County Adversely Affects Probation

A post was recently made on the WKVI Discussion board that read, “I work at a local factory for minimum type wages. I have two children and a wife. We’re falling more and more behind every day. Selling meth is looking better all the time.”

Could the economy behind the methamphetamine epidemic in Indiana? John Thorstad, Starke County’s Chief Probation Officer, said the economy might be part of the answer, but fast, easy money is probably more of a reason for producing and selling methamphetamine. He did, however, say law enforcement is having great success in closing down operations here.

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Two Winamac Residents Arrested on Drug Charges

Steven Neeley
Gina Napier

Two Winamac residents were arrested on drug charges on Sunday after police served an arrest warrant on a subject.

Officers from the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department approached the house and asked Gina Napier who all was in the house. She said that she and her children were in the house. When police asked the whereabouts of Steven Neeley, she reportedly said she didn’t know where he was. Police saw him sitting on a bed in the home and ordered him out of the house as he had an active arrest warrant. He was taken into custody.

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Knox Resident Arrested on Methamphetamine-Related Charges

A Knox man was arrested on Wednesday after Knox City Police and a Starke County Sheriff’s Department officer found drug-related items in his possession.

Police were called to the Super Value Inn in reference to a wanted person. Police saw the suspect, Matthew Hamilton, peeking out of a window at them from a room at the motel and asked him to open the door. He did and police ordered him to the ground. Police swept the room and found a bag of pills, a burnt spoon and hypodermic needles. Officers also found items reportedly used in the use of methamphetamine.

Hamilton, 22, was arrested on four active arrest warrants through Marshalll County and additional preliminary charges of Possession of Methamphetamine within 1,000 feet of a Family Housing Complex and Reckless Possession of Paraphernalia.

Jacobs Receives Sentence for Methamphetamine Charges

Traci Jacobs

Traci Jacobs received her sentence in the Starke Circuit Court yesterday. Jacobs pleaded guilty to Operating an Illegal Drug Lab as a Class D felony, and was sentenced to 12 months in the Department of Corrections with none of that sentence suspended. In a separate case, Jacobs pleaded guilty to Dealing in Methamphetamine as a Class B felony and received a ten-year sentence in the Department of Corrections, with two of those years suspended. Two years of her executed sentence will be allowed to be served on home detention.

Those sentences will run consecutively. Upon her sentencing, one cause was dismissed in which she was charged with Theft as a Class D felony, and Trespassing as a Class A misdemeanor, and another case in Knox City Court was dismissed as well.

Jacobs was arrested on active arrest warrants and on preliminary charges of Manufacturing Methamphetamine with Intent to Deal, Possession of Precursors, Illegal Drug Lab, Possession of Methamphetamine, and Possession of Paraphernalia on Thursday, November 17th.

James Sobieck Arrested on Drug Charges

James Sobieck

A sex offender residence check resulted in the arrest of a suspect on drug charges.

Officers from the Starke County Sheriff’s Department went to 11060 E. 400 N. in Grovertown and once on scene, they found several items on the property and inside a camper that are commonly used in the manufacture of methamphetamine.

Police obtained a search warrant and the warrant was executed with officers confiscating sulfuric acid, lye, solvent, methamphetamine, a one-pot method meth lab and an HCL generator.

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Two Knox Residents Arrested For Manufacturing Methamphetamine

Two Knox residents were arrested after police found an active methamphetamine lab at their residence.

On Thursday, the Starke County Sheriff’s Department, along with the Indiana State Police conducted a search warrant at 4335 E. 200 S. in Knox and arrested Mary Fort on two valid Starke Circuit Court warrant for revocation of probation.

Indiana State Police officers received consent to search the property by all parties involved and they found an active one pot method methamphetamine lab, precursors, methamphetamine, and paraphernalia.

Randall Appleton was arrested after the search. Appleton and Mary Fort both face Manufacturing Methamphetamine, Possession of Methamphetamine, and Maintaining a Common Nuisance.

Johnny P. Whitt, Jr. Arrested on Drug Charges

Johnny P. Whitt, Jr.

Johnny P. Whitt, Jr. was arrested March 6th and faces methamphetamine-related charges after police received a report of a suspicious man at Zingo Express who purchased tin foil and salt, and asked if the store sold Zip-Lock bags.

When police arrived, they found Whitt leaving the store and walking to the Super Value Inn, just north of the Zingo Express. After entering the hotel, police monitored the building and followed him after he left, before pulling him over at the intersection of Delaware Street and U.S. 35 in Knox. The man was identified as Whitt, and marijuana was found on his person along with multiple packs of cold medication.

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Cheryl Paschen Sentenced in Starke Circuit Court

Cheryl Paschen

Cheryl Paschen was sentenced yesterday in Starke Circuit Court.

She pleaded guilty in plea agreement to two counts filed against her: Possession of a Controlled Substance and Possession of a Syringe.

Judge Kim Hall sentenced her to 18 months in the Indiana Department of Corrections with 6 months suspended on both charges. Both sentences will run concurrently and on home detention through Starke County Community Corrections. As a term of her probation, she will be entering into a drug rehabilitation program and she will need to complete treatment.

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Uninsured Meth Users May Contribute to Closure of Burn Centers

Many burn centers are being taxed to the point of considering closing because they are being filled with uninsured burn patients who come in with meth related injuries.

Most of these patients are reportedly using a simple method of producing meth by putting ingredients in a two liter soda bottle. Just one simple error can cause an explosion, resulting in burns over the entire body.

The average medical bill is $130,000.

Police and medical officials are spreading the word about this dangerous practice.

Starke County Police Arrest Two on Warrants

Anne Marie Geller
Aaron Armes

Two people have been arrested on warrants involving drug charges. In December, Starke County police conducted a search warrant on a camper located on 200 South in Knox and found several items associated with the manufacture of methamphetamine and other controlled substances and drugs. Police also searched an area in the woods and found other items used in the manufacture of methamphetamine. Arrest warrants were then applied for and approved for Aaron Armes and Anne Marie Geller who were known to live in the camper. Continue reading