Meth lab numbers up 400% in W.Va. since ’08

Posted: 25th January 2013 by Doc in Uncategorized
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Wheeling, WV — Government officials in West Virginia say the number of reported methamphetamine labs in the state has jumped more than 400 percent since 2008.

If 400 percent sounds like a lot, looking at the numbers makes you realize just how bad it is.
In 2008, 50 meth labs were reported in West Virginia. That number has gone up dramatically each year since, as the following show:

• 2009: 109
• 2010: 140
• 2011: 171
• 2012: 271

To find out why meth labs are on the rise NEWS9 sat down with the U.S. attorney that serves the northern panhandle, William J. Ihlenfeld, II.

“In the northern district of West Virginia, which is 32 counties and includes the northern panhandle, we do see a lot of meth manufacturing and distribution,” said Ihlenfeld.

Even though Ihlenfeld serves the panhandle, he says many reports come from the north-central part of the state in Randolph, Upshur, and Barbour counties.

“It’s become easier to make. New methods have been figured out,” said Ihlenfeld. “There’s a shake and bake method that’s a very simple way to manufacture meth. The internet is a great thing but the Internet can be a way to distribute information on how to make things such as meth.”

Ihlenfeld says stopping meth from rising in the valley won’t be easy but there is one thing officials can do.

“If we all come together and share intelligence and if we start to see a trend and we work together we can keep it from growing into a big problem,” said Ihlenfeld.

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