By D. E. Smoot
Four people face drug manufacturing charges after being arrested for allegedly manufacturing methamphetamine at a Fort Gibson residence.
Authorities allegedly seized marijuana, precursor chemicals and methamphetamine from the home.
Authorities said the alleged meth lab was the largest operation seized in Muskogee County since the state passed laws limiting the sale of pseudoephedrine and ephedrine in 2004.
One Fort Gibson police officer who helped execute the search warrant was overcome by fumes emitted from the alleged lab. The unidentified officer was treated at Muskogee Regional Medical Center and released.
Two children, who police said were in a room adjacent to the area where the alleged lab was located, also were transported to Muskogee Regional Medical Center and examined for possible exposure. They were later placed in protective custody by the Department of Human Services, according to Officer Bill Parris.
“We did not expect it (the fumes) to be so strong,” Parris said.
Those arrested were Paul Neville, 40; Kelly Walker, 34; Billy Godwin, 47; and Steven Fixico, 38. Parris said the four “kind of drifted into Fort Gibson” recently. According to court records, Neville rented the house from Mark L. Martin, who filed a forcible entry and detainer action Monday.
“This lab had been operating several months,” Parris said. “It was a consistent lab — he (Neville) cooked all the time.”
Parris said the amount of traffic at the residence caught the attention of law enforcers several weeks ago. Police began surveilling the residence and Neville, who allegedly was seen by law enforcers buying unusually large amounts of chemicals commonly used to manufacture methamphetamine.
Using information gleaned from the surveillance, Parris said he was able to secure a search warrant. The warrant was executed Friday night by Fort Gibson police officers and agents with the Cherokee Nation Marshal Service.
All four suspects were booked into the Muskogee County/City Detention Facility on complaints of endeavoring to manufacture, child endangerment, possession of marijuana, possession of controlled dangerous substance, possession of methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia..
A Muskogee County judge set appearance bonds in the amount of $250,000 for each defendant. Charges are expected to be filed this week.
Reach D.E. Smoot at 918-684-2903 or Click Here to Send Email