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Police: Meth lab found in vehicle

Lincolnton police took this vehicle to the sheriff’s impound lot after reporting the discovery of a meth lab inside the car.

JENNA-LEY HARRISON
Staff Writer

Lincolnton Police said they arrested a man Wednesday morning after discovering he had been cooking methamphetimines in a lab inside his vehicle for almost a day.
Authorities
also said  they believe he is responsible for a second lab found behind his residence Thursday morning.
Sgt. Matt Painter said someone in the area notified them Wednesday about a possible meth lab in 40-year-old Christopher Larkin Roberts’ vehicle, located at his residence at 320 North Aspen Street.
Roberts was found passed out in his vehicle when police arrived on the scene. The man praised police for “saving his life,” Painter said.
Roberts has also been cooperative throughout the process and told authorities that he’s cooked up similar labs in the past but doesn’t sell the illegal substance. He claimed that he and his friends are the only ones who use the drug, Painter said.
The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office assisted police in sealing the vehicle, which was towed to the Sheriff’s Office impound lot.
Authorities with the State Bureau of Investigation examined both meth labs Thursday.
According to Painter, the first meth lab police located couldn’t be inspected the same day due to rainy weather conditions. He noted that lithium from batteries was used to create the lab, and that when mixed with water, has the potential to produce a “fire ball.”
“It’s dangerous to process when wet,” he said.
Police said one of the labs contained 4 grams of methamphetamine, which has a street value of $100 per gram.
In addition, police anticipate taxpayers spending between $600 and $800 for the state to clean-up each lab.
Painter pointed out that authorities are seeing an increase in the number of mobile meth labs being made across the region. The method used to make the labs is known as “shake and bake” and produces a stronger effect the longer it sits and “cooks,” he said.
Roberts has been charged with two counts of manfacturing a schedule II controlled substance, two counts of possession/distribution of a meth precursor and one count of possession of a schedule II controlled substance.
He remains in the county jail under a $120,000 bond.

Image courtesy of Nayeli Ramirez / LTN

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