Archive for Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Raids net three meth labs in county

August 20, 2003

For law enforcement officials last Thursday, one methamphetamine lab led to another.

And they hit pay dirt.

About 7 a.m. Thursday, 16 officers from the Leavenworth County sheriff's department and Leavenworth police officers raided a rental house in the 700 block of South Second Street in Leavenworth, according to Undersheriff Dave Zoellner. There, they found two women, ages 29 and 20, and two children, a 2-year-old boy and a 7-week-old girl.

After using a search warrant to enter the house, they seized about 5 grams of methamphetamine, with a street value of about $750, and less than an ounce of marijuana, with a street value of about $50, Zoellner said.

The 29-year-old woman, Leaona Rena Flynn, was taken into custody on a variety of drug charges. She later was charged in Leavenworth County District Court with attempted manufacture of methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine with intent to sell, possession of methamphetamine, felony and misdemeanor counts of possession of drug paraphernalia, no drug tax stamp, possession of marijuana and two counts of endangering a child.

"During the search, investigators discovered surveillance equipment," Zoellner said. "There were cameras on the doors, both front and rear, and they were placed where they could monitor, by both sight and sound, anyone coming up to the residence."

Police also found night-vision equipment, hand-held radios and a police scanner.

"We also seized approximately $700 in cash," Zoellner said.

The children were taken to other relatives.

"Through items discovered and seized, there was information obtained about other labs," Zoellner said.

So officers obtained a second search warrant, this time for a camping trailer, outbuildings and surrounding grounds in the 16200 block of 252nd Street, about six miles southwest of Tonganoxie.

There, Zoellner said, 11 officers found two more meth labs -- one in a camping trailer where a 40-year-old Tonganoxie man lived.

"It was the largest lab that we've ever come in contact with," Zoellner said. "The one in the trailer was a good-sized lab."

The other lab was in a car next to a shed on the property.

"There were items throughout the car that are components for a lab, whether it's for siphoning anhydrous from somewhere or coolers or plastic containers," Zoellner said. "In the outbuilding next to that, they had eight tanks."

Some of the tanks contained anhydrous, a farm chemical used in the manufacture of methamphetamine, he said.

Officers also seized about four grams of what they think is methamphetamine, which has a street value of $600, along with $700 in cash and several fire arms.

The 40-year-old man was arrested on a non-related charge of failure to appear in court on a traffic citation. The Leavenworth County attorney's office is reviewing any charges stemming from Thursday's raid.

Neither the Leavenworth woman nor the Tonganoxie man was actually manufacturing meth when officers arrived.

"Probably the last cooking was done two days before or less," Zoellner said.

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