Man charged in Cedar Rapids meth lab fire

Posted: 6th August 2012 by Doc in Uncategorized
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Police say suspect left house after fire, looking for ointment to treat burns

Charges have been filed against a Cedar Rapids man who allegedly started a fire while he was cooking methamphetamine.

Kevin Capaccioli

Kevin Capaccioli

Kevin L. Capaccioli, 55, has been charged with first-degree arson, manufacturing of methamphetamine and two counts of possession of precursors in connection with a fire on June 20 at his residence, 1546 A Ave. NE. Authorities said nine people were inside the house when the fire broke out. Capaccioli suffered burns to his hands, but no one else was injured.

According to a criminal complaint, authorities found an active meth lab in the attic of the house that had started the fire. Pseudoephedrine packaging and lithium battery casings were also found in the attic, police said.

Other tenants of the rental house told police Capaccioli was making meth in the attic and had started the fire. He initially left the house when the fire broke out, but police located him nearby with burn marks on his hands.

“He had already been to one convenience store getting ointment, and he was walking toward Hy-Vee for some more medical supplies,” Sgt. Cristy Hamblin said.

Investigators determined Capaccioli made or arranged 57 purchases of pseudoephedrine between Aug. 23, 2010 and June 18, 2012. Police said he avoided being flagged by a statewide registry at pharmacies by having friends and family members make the purchases for him.

Police said it took several weeks to build the case against Capaccioli before charges were filed.

Pamela Cook, 45, who also lived at the house, said she and Capaccioli had been dating off-and-on for the past five years. She said she suspected he was using drugs, but didn’t know he was making meth.

“He was always saying, don’t go in the attic, don’t go up there,” Cook said at the scene of the fire. “Now we know why.”



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