MOBILE METH LAB AND HOUSE RAIDED
IN SOUTH SUBURBS
Monday, Febuary 22, 2010 —Two Glenwood men are being held in Cook County Jail after a drug investigation by Cook County Sheriff’s Police revealed they were operating a methamphetamine laboratory out of their home and in their minivan, Sheriff Tom Dart announced Monday.
Kevin Halter, 51, was arrested while driving a “mobile meth lab” from his house Friday night. His roommate, George Wagner, 56, was arrested later that night at their home, where more drugs and lab equipment were seized.
County officers and federal agents spent the weekend carefully going through their rental home at 14 E. Main St. in Glenwood before turning it over to the owners – who were notified it must be decontaminated before it can be rented out again.
Methamphetamine is made with a mixture of household chemicals and over-the-counter drugs. It is a stimulant that his highly addictive and can be extremely volatile when mixed.
“This investigation began with a tip to our officers by somebody concerned about what these two were making and the effects it has on users,” Dart said. “But there was also concern for those living near the house, as well as anyone driving near the van they were using.”
Halter was pulled over about a block from his home and in the back of his Nissan Quest, police found 11.7 grams of methamphetamine, worth about $1,100, along with an ammonia tank, tubes, piping and glass, as well as several drugs and chemicals used to manufacture the drug.
Halter had spent three years in the Illinois Department of Corrections for methamphetamine charges out of Lawrence County, Illinois and had just been released from parole on Jan. 30. He told investigators he works as a truck driver and sells his drugs to those parked at truck stops, but he also sells it to people from his home.
Sheriff’s investigators then raided his Glenwood home and arrested Wagner, while also locating 3 more grams of methamphetamine, valued at $300. Additionally, police recovered more tanks, including restructured fire extinguishers and tubing to mix the chemicals.
Members of a U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency task force worked with Cook County Sheriff’s Police and Glenwood Police officials to secure and clean up the site into the weekend.
Halter is charged with six felonies – unlawful possession of anhydrous ammonia, unlawful participation in methamphetamine manufacturing, unlawful possession of methamphetamine with intent to deliver, unlawful possession of methamphetamine, unlawful possession of anhydrous ammonia in an unauthorized container and unlawful use of property under the methamphetamine manufacturing act. Police also charged him with misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia for a digital scale found in the mini-van.
Wagner is charged with four felonies – unlawful possession of methamphetamines, possession of methamphetamine manufacturing materials, unlawful use of property under the methamphetamine manufacturing act, as well as unlawfully participating in methamphetamine manufacturing.
Sunday morning, bond was set for Halter at $75,000, while bond for Wagner was set at $50,000. Both men remain in Cook County Jail. Both men are set to appear at the Markham courthouse on March 16.