Three meth labs were found in the county over the weekend bringing the total this year to 17. In fiscal year 2004, 18 meth labs were found in Scioto County, making it the fourth-highest number in the state.
Currently, Scioto County has had the second-highest number of meth lab busts in the state, coming in behind Summit County, which has a six man squad with the sole job of dealing with methamphetimine-related crimes. The reporting period for meth cases is from October to October.
On Friday, the Scioto County Sheriff's Office dismantled the county's 15th methamphetamine lab.
The Sheriff's Narcotics Unit obtained a warrant and searched two pieces of property in Washington Township, on on the corner of Jenkins and Calverts lane, where nothing was found, and the other at 1617 Jenkins Lane.
There the deputies found a meth lab. Terry D. Howard, 34, and Nicholas G. Howard, 39, both of 1617 Jenkins Lane, were arrested and charged with third-degree felony possession of chemicals for the manufacture of drugs and second-degree felony illegal manufacture of drugs.
This isn't the first arrest for the husband and wife. Detective Adam Giles said the couple was arrested in February for having a meth lab in their car and on their property.
"The information that led to the arrest was a combination of investigation and citizens' complaints," said Sheriff's Captain John Murphy.
Also on Friday, a trooper with the Portsmouth Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol found a meth lab in a car. On Monday, deputies were dealing with a meth "dump site."
"The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Identification considers anything that is or was a meth lab to be a lab," said SCSO Narcotics Investigator Adam Giles. "In this case, they just dumped everything on the side of the road."
According to Koch Crime Institute, evry pound of meth produced leaves behind five to six pounds of toxic waste.
Giles was hospitalized Friday morning from something he inhaled during the search of the 1617 Jenkins meth lab.
"I have no clue what it was," he said. He was taken to the hospital, given oxygen and something for his stomach.
Anyone with information about drug-related crimes in Scioto County can call the Scioto County Sheriff's Narcotics Unit at (740) 353-1844.
MARK SHAFFER can be reached at (740) 353-3101, Ext.235.