Meth Lab Problem in West Virginia
It's definitely going to take a team effort to put secret meth labs out of business. That's because the popularity of meth-amphetamine is on the rise. Police have already cracked over 100 illegal lab cases this year.
Henry Knauff was living next door to a meth lab. "I was shocked!" he said.
He shares a 'not-so-suprising' reaction, after finding out he was once a neighbor to a busted meth lab located on Charleston's west side.
We're not used to meth labs up here. It's kinda like our private own little sanctuary up here," said Knauff.
What was once private is now in the public's eye. Police say that's not enough in sending these illegal labs out of business.
The dangers of meth labs spreading in our area is becoming a serious problem. Police say they're serious enough to start taking a team effort across the state to stop them.
"We're researching and trying to find more assets and resources that we can bring to WV, to help make the quality of life for the citizens in WV better." said Agent Jeff Wallenstrom with the Drug Enforcement Administration.
US Attorney, Kasey Warner said, "Only when we work jointly, share our intelligence, share our resources, share our personnel, we'll be successful in this or any drug effort."
In that case police and the state are 'teaming' up to lay down the law in sending meth lab owners a word of warning.
"Upon the reccomendation of a county prosecutor or any law enforcement officer, I won't hesitate one moment to make a federal case out of a methamphetamine case," siad Warner.
According to the United States Federal Court System, a person caught with 500 grams of illegal drugs, which equals about one pound, will be sentenced to a minimum of 10 years to life.
Police have not found any direct connections between meth labs across the state so far. However, police say that doesn't necessarily mean meth users are not aware of each other's illegal activity.