BY KEN LITTLE
Drug charges were filed Wednesday night against a man and a woman allegedly operating a methamphetamine laboratory in their Bulls Gap home, Hawkins County Sheriff Ronnie Lawson said in a news release.
Donald Martin Rife, 38, and Jessica Lynn Daniels, 33, were taken into custody at 213 Northridge Circle, in the Bulls Gap section of Hawkins County.
Both remained in custody Friday in the Hawkins County Jail, held on $75,000 bond each.
Lawson said the Hawkins County Sheriff's Narcotics Unit obtained information Wednesday night about a meth lab possibly being present at the address.
Upon arrival, narcotics officers made contact with Rife.
While speaking with him, narcotics officers observed a bucket sitting on the front porch, the news release said.
"The bucket was noticed and determined to contain a homemade hydrochloric acid generator, sulfuric acid, a Mason jar containing what was later determined to be a flammable liquid, and a one-pot meth lab, which had been composed inside of a plastic Gatorade bottle," the release said.
Inside the house, narcotics officers recovered numerous other components used in the process of manufacturing methamphetamine, such as aluminum foil, Coleman fuel, empty lithium battery packs, and empty blister packs of pseudoephedrine, as well as receipts from recent purchases of instant cold packs, which contain ammonia nitrate.
All the items seized "are necessary components for manufacturing methamphetamine," the release said.
Deputies also recovered a loaded .22 caliber rifle inside the house.
Rife was decontaminated and placed in custody. He was charged with initiating the process of manufacturing methamphetamine, possession of a firearm while in commission of a dangerous drug felony, and maintaining a dwelling where narcotics are housed, sold, or manufactured.
Narcotics officers located Daniels, who is identified as Rife's live-in girlfriend, a short time later.
"Through investigation, it was determined that Ms. Daniels was aware of ongoing meth manufacturing taking place at the residence, and she had been purchasing various components ... which Mr. Rife utilized to manufacture the methamphetamine," the news release said.
It was also determined that Daniels was aware of the intended purpose for the components, which she had been purchasing, the news release said.
Daniels was charged with promoting the manufacture of methamphetamine and maintaining a dwelling where narcotics are housed, sold, or manufactured.
The Tennessee Methamphetamine and Pharmaceutical Task Force, Hawkins County Emergency Medical Services, and the Bulls Gap Volunteer Fire Department assisted at the scene.
The house was quarantined by narcotics officers, the release said.