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MIDLAND, TX – A young Midland mother died Wednesday after swallowing nearly four grams of crystal methamphetamine, officials said.

Sandy Brooke Franklin, 18, ingested the drugs Monday night in what appeared to be a “misguided attempt” to protect her boyfriend during a traffic stop, according to Midland County Sheriff Gary Painter.8459490_G

Zane Paul O’Neal, 22, is the father of Franklin’s 5-month-old son and is currently in federal custody. It’s unclear what charges he will ultimately face.

“He admitted to [Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agents] that he handed the methamphetamine to Franklin and she swallowed it,” said Painter.

Officials declined to answer questions about whether or not O’Neal allegedly instructed, threatened or forced his girlfriend to ingest the bag of drugs when they were pulled over by Midland Police.

According to Franklin’s family, O’Neal – who was on probation – told her to hide the narcotics by swallowing them and she obeyed to keep him out of jail.

“She died protecting her family,” said Brittania Upchurch Arpe, Franklin’s older sister. “She didn’t want her son to lose his father and all because of a drug that is the devil.”

O’Neal walked away from the traffic stop with no drug charges, officials said, but Franklin was taken into custody for two traffic warrants. She was booked into Midland County Jail on Monday around 10:30 p.m., according to a press release from the Sheriff’s Office.

“She was asked if she had any narcotics, weapons, medical conditions or anything else to declare,” Painter told NewsWest 9. “If she had just said something about the meth, we would have taken her to the hospital immediately. They could have pumped her stomach that night… We could have saved her.”

Instead, Franklin silently served more than 36 hours behind bars with the bag of narcotics still in her stomach. By then, her body had already succumbed to the beginning stages of “severe meth poisoning,” Painter said.

“A guard noticed that something was wrong with her on Wednesday morning, around 11:30,” he explained. “She was shaking. Her eyes were unclear… [The guard] walked her to the medical department [of the jail] for treatment and the nurse immediately called for an ambulance to take her to the hospital.”

Franklin finally admitted to swallowing a large amount of methamphetamine prior to her arrest, a claim that O’Neal later confirmed to officials while she was in the emergency room at Midland Memorial Hospital.

“It was too late,” said Painter, who sat with Franklin’s family in the waiting room and cried with them when doctors confirmed there was no hope. “If they had just told us earlier, we could have done something… My job is to take care of [inmates] and this is such a loss of feeling.”

Her sister told NewsWest 9 their family “wants everybody to understand that Zane [O’Neal] is hurting too” and added that “teenagers everywhere need to learn from this and understand the dangers of meth.”

The Drug Enforcement Unit for the Sheriff’s Department and officers of the Abilene Police Department completed a two-week-long investigation of prostitution in Abilene with the arrest of Ginger Ann Burleson Thursday.

Burleson, 39, was arrested after she agreed to perform oral sex on an undercover officer in exchange for controlled substances. After the controlled substances were exchanged, Burleson was arrested and found to be in possession of methamphetamine.

Burleson was incarcerated in the Dickinson County Jail for conspiracy to sell sexual relations, selling sexual relations, possession of methamphetamine, possession of a Schedule II controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.

The case is ongoing and further arrests are expected.

YOUNGSTOWN — Police say they found a mobile methamphetamine lab during a traffic stop about 6:50 p.m. Thursday on the West Side.

Reports said officers pulled over a car driven by Deanna Moschella, 35, on North Btockway Avenue, for erratic driving. Officers noticed her stopped in the middle of an intersection and followed her to her home.

Reports said Moschella told police her license was suspended and she was taken into custody. When they searched her car they found muriatic acid, lye, Drano and Coleman fuel in two separate coolers in the trunk, which are ingredients for methamphetamine, reports said.

Moschella was arrested on charges of driving under suspension, illegal assembly or possession of chemicals to manufacture drugs and possessing drug abuse instruments because she also had two needles in her car, reports said.

Moschella was taken to the Mahoning County jail

A Marianna man is facing several drug charges after he was found unresponsive in a motel room.

Arrested was Roy Allen Hall, 34, of Marianna. He was charged with possession of controlled substance (methamphetamine), trafficking of a controlled substance (methamphetamine), possession of controlled substance (hydrocodone), trafficking of controlled substance (pseudoephedrine) and possession of drug paraphernalia.

According to the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office, early Friday afternoon, the agency received a call from an employee at the Super 8 Motel on Highway 71 South in Marianna who said that they had found a man, later identified as Hall, lying in his motel room, unresponsive.

Deputies arrived, entered the room and found Hall lying on his side. He was unresponsive to initial contact, but officers were soon able to rouse him. Hall, officials say, appeared to be under the influence of some type of narcotics.

Employees asked that Hall be removed from the property, due to being late on his check-out time, so Hall was told to gather his belongings and vacate the room. Once he did, investigators entered and searched the room and the remaining items inside. They noticed a piece of tin foil with burnt residue on it lying on the table. In the foil, investigators found a white substance that was field tested and yielded a positive result for methamphetamine. Investigators also found scales, a roll of tin foil and plastic tubing consistent with the use, manufacture and distribution of illegal narcotics.

As investigators continued to search the room, they found a small container of suspected meth in a man’s boot lying on the floor next to the bed. Upon lifting the mattresses, they saw a small zipper pouch lying directly under the area of the bed Hall was on earlier. In the pouch were two plastic bags with suspected methamphetamine and several pills. An additional field test was positive for methamphetamine.

Inventoried were approximately 74 grams of methamphetamine, 40 pseudoephedrine pills and 16 hydrocodone pills, with an estimated street value of approximately $8,000.

A Muncie man was arrested Thursday after a police officer drove by his garage and saw him allegedly making methamphetamine in plain view.

Dale Andrew Mitchell, 55, was already wanted on warrants for possession of cocaine and being a habitual traffic violator before his arrest on this latest charge.meth_lab_getty_1365772700298_400225_ver1_0_640_480

An Indiana State Police trooper drove past his residence attempting to locate him on those outstanding warrants when he allegedly saw Mitchell standing in the open garage with fresh burns over his upper body.

A quick investigation determined a “one pot” meth lab had just exploded, burned Mitchell around his neck and shoulder. The trooper also found chemicals used in the manufacture of methamphetamine in plain view in the garage.

After being transported to IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital for treatment, Mitchell was arrested on additional charges of manufacturing methamphetamine, possession of the precursors with intent to manufacture, possession of methamphetamine and maintaining a common nuisance.

A routine probation search turned up 1 pound of methamphetamine and led to two arrests at a house in Monterey Friday.

Detectives searched a house in the 200 block of Glenwood Circle, located behind Monterey Peninsula College, where they found a bounty of drugs and guns this morning, according to a press release from the Peninsula Regional Violence and Narcotics Team (PRVNT).55bc1b555585c_image

Officers seized 1 pound of meth, 1 ounce of heroin, scales and plastic bags, one SKS assault rifle that shoots a 7.62-caliber round, two loaded handguns—both with high-capacity magazines—and $500 in cash.

Robert Sampson, 39 years old, and Gabriella Vargas, who is 37, were both arrested. Sampson was arrested on charges of being a prohibited person in possession of a firearm, possession of an assault rifle, possession of a high-capacity magazine, w prohibited person in possession of ammunition, possession of methamphetamine for sale, possession of heroin for sale and possession of drug paraphernalia. Vargas was found to have a no-bail felony warrant for violation of probation.

PRVNT Sgt. Mike Bruno says the street value of the meth they found is upward of $15,000.

“Usually meth is broken down into ounces for sale,” he says. “An ounce sells for about $1,000.”

Both Sampson and Vargas were booked into Monterey County Jail.

LOS ANGELES >> In-N-Out Burger was sued by a customer who claims he got sick from drinking a beverage he purchased at the Downey eatery he later found out contained two methamphetamine capsules.

Fred Maldonado filed the lawsuit Wednesday in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleging negligence and strict liability. The complaint seeks unspecified damages.

The suit states that Maldonado bought a burger and drink from the drive-through lane of the restaurant on Firestone Boulevard on March 9, 2014. He then took the items back to his nearby motel room, the suit states.

The next morning Maldonado found two capsules and a napkin at the bottom of the drink cup, the suit states. He returned to the same In-N-Out location and told the manager, who apologized and offered him a certificate for a free burger, according to the complaint.

“Plaintiff did not initially know what the two capsules were, but later testing revealed that they were methamphetamine and that it appeared that they may have been illicitly manufactured,” the suit states.

Maldonado suffered nausea and severe mental distress as a result of consuming the beverage, the suit states.

“At In-N-Out Burger, we have always served the freshest, highest quality burgers, fries, and drinks and customer safety is one of our highest priorities,” In-N-Out Burger executive vice president Arnie Wensinger told City News Service.

“We will vigorously defend these baseless claims. Due to the fact that this matter involves ongoing litigation, we will unfortunately not be able to comment any further.”

Cumberland County authorities have arrested a 59-year-old man and charged him with running a methamphetamine lab.

On Wednesday, the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office and the State Bureau of Investigation executed a search warrant at 9785 Ruth Vinson Road in Autryville.thomas-franklin-norris

Thomas Franklin Norris, 59, was charged with running a methamphetamine lab. Agents said they found a fully functioning methamphetamine lab as well as three firearms. The State Bureau of Investigations hazardous materials agents collected, and stored the dangerous chemicals and dismantled the lab.

Norris, who has a previous conviction for Possession and Distribution of Precursors Methamphetamine, was again charged at the time of this arrest with Manufacturing Methamphetamine, Possession and Distribution of Methamphetamine Precursors, Maintaining a Dwelling for the sale of Methamphetamine, and Possession of a Firearm by a Felon.

Norris received a $ 50,000 secure bond.

A Clare County woman has been charged with operating a methamphetamine lab after police received a tip earlier this month.

Magistrate Karen Willing of the 80th District Court in Harrison on Tuesday arraigned Jillian Renea Husted and ordered her to remain in the Clare County Jail in lieu of $100,000 bond.

Husted, 37, is accused of “cooking” the drug at a home in the 300 block of North First Street in Harrison, which is roughly three blocks from the Clare County Sheriff’s Department.

Deputies responding to the tip allegedly found Husted in the process of making and distributing meth, Undersheriff Dwayne Miedzianowski said.

Deputies received the tip July 8, the undersheriff said.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Federal prosecutors say 11 people have been charged with participating in a methamphetamine distribution ring.

The U.S. attorney’s office in Memphis says 11 people were indicted Wednesday on charges of conspiracy to possess meth with intent to distribute. Five of those defendants also were indicted on charges of conspiracy to launder drug proceeds.

Agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration, the FBI, the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office and police departments in Memphis and West Memphis, Arkansas, conducted the investigations of the defendants. Police departments in Germantown and Bartlett, along with the U.S. Marshals Service, helped make arrests.

Prosecutors say nine weapons were seized during searches of homes. If convicted, the defendants face a maximum of 20 years to life in prison.

Five men associated with the Sinaloa Cartel were arrested in Ontario in connection with the trafficking of 55 pounds of methamphetamine with a street value of $2 million, the state Attorney’s General’s Office said Thursday.

Pedro Gallegos, 33, Teodoro Yau-Silva, 43, Bernardo Real-Rojo, 39, Anthony Perez, 29, and Jose Christian Rodriguez, 19, were arrested on charges of transportation of methamphetamine and possession for sales, as well as conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.

The cartel’s high-profile leader, Joaquin Guzman, who is known as El Chapo, escaped from a Mexican prison on July 11 through an underground tunnel. The cartel gained notoriety for using tunnels to smuggle drugs under the border.

“California is the gateway for 70 percent of the methamphetamine trafficked into the United States from Mexico,” said Attorney General Kamala D. Harris.

“This dangerous drug, and the actions of those who traffic and sell it, threatens the public health and safety of our communities. I thank our DOJ agents and local and federal partners for their commitment to dismantling transnational criminal organizations.”

In one investigation, an undercover state Department of Justice Bureau of Investigation special agent arranged to purchase 30 pounds of methamphetamine for $4,000 per pound and the suspects agreed to complete the transaction in two deliveries of 15 pounds each, according to an attorney general’s news release.

On July 16, Real-Rojo, Perez, and Rodriguez were arrested after allegedly delivering 25 pounds of methamphetamine to the undercover agent in a public parking lot in Ontario. The suspects were expecting a payment of $87,500 for the methamphetamine that has an estimated street value of $1.25 million, authorities said.

On July 22, Gallegos and Teodoro Yau-Silva were arrested in an Ontario parking lot after allegedly delivering another installment of 15 pounds of methamphetamine to the undercover agent. The suspects were expecting payment of $60,000 for methamphetamine with an estimated street value of $750,000, authorities said.

Gallegos, Yau-Silva, Real-Rojo, Perez and Rodriguez were being held at the West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga. Bail for each suspect was set at $500,000.

Gallegos and Yau-Silva will be prosecuted by the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office and Real-Rojo, Perez and Rodriguez by the U.S. Department of Justice, authorities said.

LOS ANGELES — California Attorney General Kamala Harris says five men suspected of having connections to Mexico’s notorious Sinaloa drug cartel have been arrested for allegedly trafficking 55 pounds of methamphetamine with a street value of $2 million.

The arrests were announced Thursday.

Authorities say two of the five were arrested in an Ontario parking lot earlier this month when they attempted to deliver a partial shipment of the drug to an undercover agent they thought was a buyer.

The others were arrested during another delivery attempt.

They were jailed in San Bernardino County on $500,000 bail.

Authorities say deliveries were negotiated with cartel representatives in Mexico and the United States.

Harris says California is the gateway for 70 percent of the methamphetamine trafficked to the United States from Mexico.


Rock Hill woman who buried baby has past domestic violence conviction

ROCK HILL — The Rock Hill woman who police say hid her pregnancy from family, then buried her baby boy in the backyard, was convicted two years ago of assaulting her husband after claiming to have been a domestic violence victim herself, court and police records show.

The lawyer for Tara Lynn Ostrowski, who remained jailed without bond Thursday, has promised a “vigorous defense” and investigation on her behalf.ostrowskimug

The York County Coroner’s Office has ruled the death a homicide but has not determined a cause of death. Ostrowksi is charged with unlawful neglect of a child after prosecutors said a child fatality task force investigation found no evidence she intentionally killed her son.

An autopsy of the baby, who lived only minutes by Ostrowski’s own admission, revealed the presence of narcotics in his body, according to police records and arrest warrants. Police allege that Ostrowski, 37, smoked methamphetamine and took non-prescribed narcotics before she gave birth in May.

Police say Ostrowski, 37, admitted to the crime when they questioned her in May after an informant told a mental health worker about the pregnancy and burial.

In 2012, Ostrowski was charged with criminal domestic violence following an incident during which police say she attacked her husband while he slept. York County sheriff’s deputies responded to a report that Ostrowski was yelling and tearing up her in-laws’ home and that she jumped on her husband while he was asleep, according to the original police report.

In that incident, Ostrowski told deputies she and her husband had been arguing and claimed her husband threw her to the floor, the police report states. However, her husband said he only pushed her off him and she had thrown a picture frame at him after she had been drinking, according to the report.

Court records show that Ostrowski pleaded guilty in 2013 to third degree assault and battery in a special court York County maintains to hear domestic violence cases.

It remains unclear if Ostrowski will face any civil action in Family Court in the death of her baby, or any more criminal charges. Rock Hill police are still investigating to see if the burial violated any civil codes or criminal laws, said Capt. Brent Allmon, spokesman for the Rock Hill Police Department.

Harry Dest, 16th Circuit Chief Public defender, met with Ostrowski in the York County jail Thursday. Dest declined to comment on the meeting, but he said his office would investigate the police allegations that Ostrowski hid the pregnancy and secretly buried her son.

“We are just starting our look into this and will investigate the allegations,” he said, “and we will provide a vigorous defense in this case.”

The allegations against Ostrowski have shocked neighbors and others, including neighbor Betty Jenkins, who only recently retired from Piedmont Medical Center after 50 years as a nurse.

“I wish I would have known,” Jenkins said. “I would have helped her get medical attention.”

ROCK HILL, SC (WBTV) —A newborn baby, who police say was buried in a backyard by his mother, tested positive for hydrocodone and methamphetamine, according to the York County coroner.

Police say Tara Ostrowski, 37, is charged with unlawful conduct toward a child. She is accused of burying her dead son in her backyard earlier this year.Tara-Ostrowski-jpg

According to a police report, Ostrowski gave birth to the boy at home sometime around May 18, but the baby did not survive. Ostrowski says the baby, born at least a month early, was alive after his birth.

Officers were called about the incident about a week later.

The police report says that when detectives went to the home to investigate on May 28, Ostrowski admitted to burying the baby in the yard and showed officers where the body was located.

Rock Hill police arrested Ostrowski on Tuesday on a charge of unlawful conduct toward a child.

Ostrowski is being held without bond at the Moss Detention Center.

Toxicology tests showed the infant had hydrocodone, methamphetamine, and its metabolite amphetamine, in his system.

Investigators say the cause of death could not to be determined, but the death is being called a homicide.

Two Lee County women were arrested Sunday, July 26 and charged with possession of methamphetamine with intent to sell.

Rita J. Buckingham, of Shannon, and Lori June Schmidt, of Nettleton, were picked up by Itawamba County deputies in Tremont, for stealing a car and smuggling narcotics into the neighboring county.

Rita J. Buckingham and Lori June Schmidt

Rita J. Buckingham and Lori June Schmidt

The vehicle had been stolen from Pontotoc County.

The suspects were stopped on Hwy. 178 when a check on their license plate revealed it belonged on another vehicle. A search by narcotics investigators and deputies uncovered two ounces of methamphetamine.

Methamphetamine (also called meth, crystal, chalk, and ice, among other terms) is an extremely addictive stimulant drug that is chemically similar to amphetamine. It takes the form of a white, odorless, bitter-tasting crystalline powder.

It is taken orally, smoked, snorted, or dissolved in water or alcohol and injected. Smoking or injecting the drug delivers it very quickly to the brain, where it produces an immediate, intense euphoria.

Both suspects were brought before Itawamba Justice Court Judge Barry Davis. Buckingham, 42, and Schmidt, 44, had their bonds set at $10,000 each. They were then transported to Pontotoc County to face charges for the stolen vehicle.

Any additional information related to this case should be called in to (662) 862-3401.

A man who fell asleep while weighing methamphetamine was arrested overnight in the Calwa area, police reported.

Sgt. Eddie Barrios said officers received a call Tuesday night from citizens who spotted the man sleeping in a truck with the engine running in the parking lot of the Bank of America at Jensen and Cedar avenues. Several people tried to wake the man by knocking on the windows with no

Arriving officers observed that the man, identified as Say Vanna, 32, was sitting next to a scale with about 30 wrapped pieces of methamphetamine. He also had concentrated cannabis on his lap. Barrios said the man admitted to falling asleep while weighing the contraband. He was booked on charges of possession of a controlled substance and violation of parole.

TRINITY, TX (KTRK) —  Two parents were arrested following a rollover wreck in Trinity County that sent both of their children to the hospital. Investigators say they found meth in the vehicle.

The accident happened just before 10pm Tuesday night in the Lake L subdivision. Trinity County officials say Joseph Collier, 24, was driving with his wife, Melissa Thrasher, 32, and their two sons – ages 4 and 5 – when he lost control of the vehicle and wrecked.891282_800x450

The youngest son was flown via medical helicopter to the hospital and the younger son was taken by ground ambulance to ETMC-Trinity, and was later flown to a Houston hospital. At this point, the children’s condition is unknown.

Investigators say the children were not properly restrained.

Deputies say they found methamphetamines at the scene. Both Collier and Thrasher were arrested and charged with felony reckless injury to a child causing serious bodily injury. Collier was additionally charged with felony intoxicated assault with vehicle/serious bodily injury and felony possession of a controlled substance.

Investigators say Thrasher also had a Walker County misdemeanor theft warrant.

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. –  10 Springfield residents have been indicted by a federal grand jury for their roles in a now 29-defendant conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine in Greene, Polk, Christian, Jasper, Laclede and Webster counties.

Kenneth A. Hoffman, 45, David L. Miller, Jr., 39, Jeffrey L. Hatch, 46, Gregory L. “Pops” Jones, 50, David A. Floyd, 40, Jeffrey M. Gardner, 33, Corey A. Stienbarger, 26, and Brandon W. Malen, 25, all of Springfield, Heather L. Courtois, 31, of Republic, Mo., and Brandon A. House, 32, of Ash Grove, Mo., were charged in a 66-count second superseding indictment returned under seal by a federal grand jury in Springfield on Wednesday, July 22, 2015. This second superseding indictment replaces an April 2, 2015, federal indictment and adds these 10 defendants to the 19 defendants previously charged as well as additional charges.

Kenneth R. Friend, 44, Anthony J. Van Pelt, 36, Anthony M. Massoni, 41, Melody W. Carpenter, 32, Bonnie L. Amodio, 29, Donette C. Davis, 41, Justin D. Owens, 28, and Neil L. Manning, 47, all of Springfield; Kenna M. Harmon, 36, of Republic, Mo.; Anthony A. Hatfield, 31, of Nixa, Mo.; Joseph R. Allen, 41, of Half Way, Mo.; Tiffany A. Brawley, 26, of Phillipsburg, Mo.; Carlos Tapia, 40, of Lee’s Summit, Mo.; Eric M. McClanahan, 35, of Kansas City, Kan.; Cheryl D. Paluczak, 48, of St. Charles, Mo.; Nelson Olmeda, also known as “Diego,” 25, of Rosenberg, Texas; Robert A. Edson, 32, of Richmond, Texas; Robert Canales, 32, of Houston, Texas; and Clayton J. Mendes, 34, address unknown, were charged in the previous indictment. McClanahan and Carpenter have pleaded guilty and are therefore omitted from the second superseding indictment returned today.

The second superseding indictment alleges that all of the defendants participated in a conspiracy to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine in Greene, Polk, Christian, Jasper, Laclede and Webster counties from June 1, 2013, to Nov. 29, 2014.

In addition to the drug-trafficking conspiracy, Harmon is charged in a money-laundering conspiracy. The indictment alleges that Harmon paid $324,185 in cash for the construction of a residence in Halfway, Mo., in 2014. All of those funds, the indictment says, were from the proceeds from the unlawful sale of methamphetamine. While building the residence, Harmon allegedly used the property to promote her continued sale of methamphetamine by storing methamphetamine at the residence, and allegedly asked Allen to provide security at the residence, in part, to protect the methamphetamine stored there.

Harmon is also charged with one count of distributing methamphetamine and one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Harmon is also charged with one count of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Harmon allegedly was in possession of a Jennings by Calwestco .22-caliber pistol.

Hatch is also charged with three counts of distributing methamphetamine and two counts of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Hatch is also charged with one count of being a felon and an unlawful drug user in possession of a firearm and one count of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime. Hatch allegedly was in possession of a Springfield Armory semi-automatic 9mm handgun.

Manning is also charged with five counts of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute and with one count of being a felon in possession of firearms. Manning allegedly was in possession of a Taurus 9mm semi-automatic pistol, a Llama .40-caliber semi-automatic pistol and ammunition.

Massoni was also charged with two counts of being an unlawful drug user in possession of a firearm and ammunition. Massoni was allegedly in possession of a Taurus .45-caliber semi-automatic handgun and ammunition, and in possession of a Taurus .357-caliber handgun and ammunition.

Friend is also charged with seven counts of distributing methamphetamine and one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Friend and Olmeda are charged together in one count of engaging in monetary transactions to promote unlawful activity. The indictment alleges that Friend paid Olmeda $20,000 for the purchase of methamphetamine; those funds allegedly were the proceeds of illegal methamphetamine trafficking.

Allen is also charged with one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute and one count of possessing firearms in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime. Allen allegedly was in possession of a Savage Arms .22-caliber rifle, a Mossberg 12-gauge shotgun, a Remington .22-caliber rifle, a Jennings by Bryco Arms .22-caliber pistol, two Glock .40-caliber pistols, a Rock Island Armory .45-caliber pistol and a Cobra .22-caliber derringer.

Hoffman is also charged with three counts of distributing methamphetamine and with five counts of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Gardner is also charged with two counts of distributing methamphetamine. Jones is also charged with two counts of distributing methamphetamine. Miller is also charged with one count of distributing methamphetamine and two counts of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Brawley is also charged with two counts of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Owens is also charged with two counts of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute.

Van Pelt is also charged with one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Van Pelt and Stienbarger are charged together in one count of distributing methamphetamine. Van Pelt and Malen are charged together in one count of distributing methamphetamine. Malen is also charged with one count of making a building in Springfield available for the purpose of unlawfully storing, distributing and using methamphetamine. Malen is also charged with one count of being an unlawful drug user in possession of firearms. Malen allegedly was in possession of two Remington .30-06-caliber rifles, a Savage .22-caliber rifle, a Browning .22-caliber rifle, and ammunition.

House, Floyd, Amodio, Hatfield, Paluczak and Miller are each also charged with one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Edson and Canales are also charged together in one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Olmeda, Edson and Canales are charged together in one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute.

Courtois was charged with one count of making a building in Republic available for the purpose of unlawfully storing, distributing and using methamphetamine.

The second superseding indictment also contains several forfeiture allegations, which would require various defendants to forfeit to the government any property used to commit the alleged offenses and any property derived from the proceeds of the alleged offenses, including Harmon’s residential property in Halfway, six vehicles (a Chevrolet Avalanche, a 2004 BMW-5 Series, a 2005 Mazda 6, a 2006 Hyundai Tiberon, a 1992 Harley-Davidson motorcycle, and a 2001 Harley-Davidson motorcycle), a total of $160,119 seized by law enforcement on various dates and at various locations, four rings and some bracelets and numerous firearms and ammunition.

Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, cautioned that the charges contained in this indictment are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Randall Eggert and Gary Milligan. It was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, IRS-Criminal Investigation, the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the Springfield, Mo., Police Department and Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — A Glocester man is facing a drug dealing charge after authorities say they stopped the car he was driving and discovered a batch of methamphetamine cooking in the trunk.

Kevin Lewis, 40, of 18 Spruce Ridge Road, Chepachet, was ordered detained Wednesday on a count of manufacturing and possessing methamphetamine with intent to distribute after an appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Patricia A. Sullivan in U.S. District Court.

“This is not only a controlled substance … but it’s using a technique that creates a really extraordinary risk [of explosion],” Sullivan said in ordering Lewis held.

Wearing khaki pants and a T-shirt, a bearded Lewis appeared very subdued during the proceedings, politely answering the judge.

Glocester police alerted U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agents early Tuesday about a suspected clandestine “one-pot” meth lab after noticing a strong smell of acetone, which is associated with meth production, during a traffic stop, according to an affidavit of Special Agent Alan J. Sims. The police had stopped Lewis around 6:37 a.m. on an outstanding Family Court warrant.

Lewis’s wife, Carolyn, drove the Nissan Maxima that Lewis had been driving to the Glocester police headquarters and verbally consented to a search of the car, the affidavit says. In the trunk, they found an active batch of meth cooking in a one-liter plastic bottle set within a five-gallon bucket as well as two hydrochloric acid gas generators used in producing meth. A completed batch was in a cooler, along with pseudoephedrine blister packs, the affidavit said.

Carolyn Lewis again consented to a search of her father’s Spruce Ridge Road property, where the couple had been living, the affidavit said. DEA task force agents discovered two plastic bottles that had previously been used to produce meth and another completed batch of one-pot meth in the back of a Taurus belonging to Lewis, it says.

A one-pot lab is a rudimentary process that combines pseudoephedrine and other chemicals in a disposable container to produce meth.

Agents seized nine grams of meth linked to Lewis, according to the affidavit. Pharmacies are required by law to record the amount of pseudoephedrine being purchased. Records revealed that Lewis purchased 49.92 grams from November through Tuesday and was denied purchases at other times, it says. One gram of pseudoephedrine produces .9 grams of meth, authorities say.

Lewis’s lawyer, Tara I. Allen, had asked that he be released to a drug treatment facility. Assistant U.S. Attorney Gerard Sullivan asked that Lewis remain held, noting that he had been arrested 24 times over the past three decades and had a history of domestic violence.

A federal case investigating a conspiracy to distribute meth throughout southwestern Missouri counties now has 29 defendants after 10 more people were charged Wednesday afternoon.

Kenneth A. Hoffman, 45; David L. Miller Jr., 39; Jeffrey L. Hatch, 46; Gregory L. “Pops” Jones, 50; David A. Floyd, 40; Jeffrey M. Gardner, 33; Corey A. Stienbarger, 26; and Brandon W. Malen, 25, all of Springfield; Heather L. Courtois, 31, of Republic, and Brandon A. House, 32, of Ash Grove were all indicted for their alleged participation in a conspiracy to distribute 500 grams or more of meth throughout Greene, Polk, Christian, Jasper, Laclede and Webster counties from June 1, 2013 to Nov. 29, 2014.

Kenna Harmon, a defendant from an earlier indictment, is alleged to have paid for the construction of a residence in Halfway with $324,185 made from the unlawful sale of meth. The property was then used by her to continue to sell and store meth.

The release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Western District of Missouri lists a variety of other charges for individuals allegedly involved in the conspiracy, ranging from money laundering to illegal firearms possession to making a building available to store meth.

This indictment supersedes an earlier one in which 12 more people were charged in the same conspiracy, as well as a second in which the total rose to 19. Two people from an earlier indictment, Eric McClanahan and Melody Carpenter, have since pleaded guilty and are omitted from the superseding indictment.

The indictment also requires various defendants to surrender property, including a house, four cars, two motorcycles, $160,119, four rings, several bracelets and numerous firearms and their ammunition.

An unlicensed driver who ran a red light and hit a 12-year-old boy while under the influence of methamphetamine has been jailed for seven months.

Leah Lenarczyk’s case has prompted calls for tougher drug-driving laws in South Australia.6660834-3x2-340x227

The 39-year-old had been acquitted of an aggravated charge of causing serious harm by dangerous driving after two methamphetamine experts said the drug could have some positive effects on a driver’s alertness.

Lenarczyk instead was convicted by the Adelaide District Court of a lesser charge of aggravated driving without due care, over the road crash at Salisbury Heights in 2012.

Her car hit Nickolas Falco, 12, who suffered extensive injuries, including a fractured skull and a collapsed lung.

Judge Barry Beazley said he could not be certain about the effect of the methamphetamine use on Lenarczyk’s driving.

“In your case, the prosecution was not able to satisfy me beyond reasonable doubt as to the effects of methamphetamine on that day,” he said.

“There was no evidence that the driving leading up to the collision involved any overtly poor driving, veering across the road, high speed or otherwise.”

Driver had never been licensed

Lenarczyk had never had a driver’s license, but had been convicted for driving when unlicensed and fined several times.

Judge Beazley said Lenarczyk’s luck had now run out and there was insufficient reason to suspend the sentence because the woman had disregard for the driving laws and road safety.

“The fact that you drove with your children in the vehicle, without a license and having consumed methamphetamine was, as I’m sure you accept, outrageous,” he said.

The judge found Lenarczyk failed to properly watch the road and had hit the boy before she saw him.

Commissioner for Victims’ Rights Michael O’Connell said the law needed to change to stamp out drug-driving.

“We need to go back, review the law and look at the possibility of ensuring that we don’t have this type of circumstance, where it’s near impossible to prove a person is affected by methamphetamine when they drive,” he said.

“In my view we need to have a proper, sound, reasoned debate, about not only alcohol but also drugs in our community.

He said the law was clear on alcohol use when driving and needed to be the same in regard to drug use.

Mr O’Connell said the young victim’s family was hopeful the court case would lead to legal reform.

“They don’t want this particular case to simply pass by as being just another court case, they want to use it as a stepping stone for law reform,” he said.

The victim’s family declined to make any comment as they left the court.

A COLOMBIAN model could face execution after being caught carrying drugs inside her laptop in China.    048217-2a962580-3631-11e5-b159-57caeec80925

It was supposed to be the trip of a lifetime for Juliana Lopez, but this one mistake could mean the 22-year-old could face death.

The beauty queen was travelling through China, on her way home to compete in the Miss World Medellin beauty pageant after winning the competition at the district level. She had gone to China to purchase items for her trendy boutique back home.

Ms Lopez’s family grew worried about the young woman when they lost contact with her after a few days and contacted the Colombian embassy.048245-2b915270-3631-11e5-b159-57caeec80925

Family members had called to report the traveler had disappeared, but were shocked to learn she had in fact been arrested.

Chinese officials told the family Ms Lopez had been caught with “a large quantity of a banned substance” inside her laptop, local newspaper El Tiempo reported.

The woman’s family is now desperately trying to raise funds to be visit and cover Ms Lopez’s legal costs. She may now face the death penalty.

Ms Lopez has been described as a “good girl”, gifted student and contestant of beauty contests, and a promising athlete.049566-2ca659f8-3631-11e5-b159-57caeec80925

Her football coach, Alejandro Duque, told the newspaper she was “the central point of the group”.

“My heart tells me that she is not guilty, she is a fighter,” he said.

“She cannot be sentenced yet, I have hope that she is innocent and that everything can be sorted out.”

Her friend Lis Hernandez said she believes her friend is innocent.

“My heart tells me she is not guilty,” she said.

“You cannot condemn it yet, I have hope that he is innocent and everything is clear.”

The Colombian Foreign Ministry is reportedly assisting the young woman as the investigation goes on. It is expected to take up to two years.

Ms Lopez joins 138 prisoners in China’s jails. China has the highest execution rate of any country, and carries out more executions than the rest of the world combined, according to Amnesty International.

A Columbus woman is in custody after security personnel said they saw her taking items from a store in the 2000 block of Merchants Mile.

Columbus Police Officer Wesley Dodge located Sara K. Forney, 39, 161 Carrie Lane, outside the store at about 6 p.m. Monday, said Sgt. Matt Harris, Columbus Police spokesman.20150729cr_jail_mug_forney__sara_jpg

Officers learned she had items that she had not paid for in a bag and then located methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia in her purse, Harris said.

Forney was arrested on preliminary charges of possession of methamphetamine, possession of paraphernalia and theft, police said.

She is being held in the Bartholomew County Jail in lieu of $62,500 bond.

YORK CO. — Defense lawyer Chris Wellborn described the living conditions in Shealee Henigar’s home as “a terrible situation for children.”

Henigar pled guilty Tuesday to multiple charges including manufacturing methamphetamine, and exposing three children to the drug. Their ages at the time were three, two and nine months old.GS_story

“It’s just a sad situation where a drug addiction spiraled out of control,” said Deputy Solicitor Leslie Robinson.

York County drug agents found the “shake and bake” style meth lab at the home in Clover in December 2013.

The drugs, and drug-making chemicals, were found in the same room with Henigar’s children. She and others were cooking the highly dangerous drug only feet from the nine month old’s crib.

In the home, officers found all the ingredients for a meth lab, including pseudoephedrine, camp fuel, denatured alcohol, scales, coffee filters, acetone, sulfuric acid, instant cold packs, funnels, and other materials.

One child even swallowed some of the chemicals at one point after taking a drink from a container that was used to mix them. Another child tested positive for meth following Henigar’s arrest.

On Tuesday she was sentenced to eight years in prison. She had no criminal record before this drug arrest. Robinson said the negotiated sentence sent a message.

“Manufacturing methamphetamine is an extremely dangerous process regardless of whether children are involved, but the children just took it to another level,” she said.

In May, the father of the children, David Lee Ray Jr., also pled guilty, and was sentenced to 10 years in prison in the same case.

Robinson told Channel 9 the couple cooked the drug every day, hoping to stay high all the time.

Henigar, now 25, has since had a fourth child, who was born since she’s been in jail.

That child and the three others are still in Department of Social Services custody.

BELLINGHAM, Washington — The city of Bellingham and the owners of the condemned Aloha Motel have agreed on a price for the property.

The Bellingham Herald reports ( ) that the City Council approved a settlement Monday in which the city will purchase the property for $1.58 million. The sale is expected to close Sept. 1 after which the motel will be demolished.

The Aloha Motel has a reputation for criminal activity, and the Whatcom County Health Department found methamphetamine contamination in 11 rooms.

After the motel is removed, city officials say they will seek proposals from developers later this year for how to redevelop the property.–Bellingham-Motel-Condemned

The man convicted of killing three people and wounded a fourth in Pelzer in 2014 who died while serving his sentence at the McCormick Correctional Institute was killed by an overdose of methamphetamine, according to McCormick County Coroner Faye Puckett.Jared%20Williams_1415911261234_9581629_ver1_0_640_480

Greenville’s WYFF News 4 has reported that Puckett said that Jared Michael Williams swallowed a plastic baggie that contained drugs.

Efforts by the Independent Mail to reach Puckett on Tuesday were unsuccessful.

The South Carolina Department of Corrections spokeswoman Stephanie Givens would only say that Williams’ death, which happened in March, was under investigation. She refused to confirm any other details.

Williams was sentenced to three consecutive life sentences after pleading guilty to the murders of Wanda Anderson, 40, Victor Vandegrift, 48, and Hank Eaton, 33, at a home in Pelzer in March 2014.