Four arrested in Owls Head meth lab raid

5:00 PM, Nov 15, 2013   |    comments
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OWLS HEAD, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Police raided a house in Owls Head Friday morning that turned out to also be home to a drug lab.

Agents from the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency say the people living at that house had been cooking up the drug called methamphetamine, or "meth."

State drug agents were joined by chemists from the state's environmental health lab and cleanup experts from the Department of Environmental Protection. Commander Scott Pelletier of the MDEA says they first found evidence around the outside of the house, including chemical residue from drug manufacturing. That led them inside the house, where chemical samples were collected and taken back to the state laboratory. They say today's raid followed a month long investigation into methamphetamine use in the area. It also followed the discovery of another meth lab earlier this year a few miles away in St. George.

Police say there were four people in the house when they arrived. All four were taken away and interviewed. A few hours later, all four were arrested. They are identified as Heather Gregory, Travis Batty, Anthony Torre and Damien Welch -- all said by police to be from Owls Head. Welch was charged with aggravated trafficking in meth-amphetamines, a Class A felony.

The others were charged with the Class B felony of trafficking in the drug. More charges may be added. All four are being held at the Knox County Jail.

The Maine DEA says meth-amphetamine use is small in the state, compared with the major drugs -- Oxycodone and Heroin. But agents say they have been seeing meth more often. The raid on Friday is the fourteenth meth lab bust in the state this year.

Agents also warn that the chemical byproducts of meth labs are extremely toxic to people and animals, and can also be highly flammable.

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