BY KEN LITTLE
A Greene County man was among three people charged with drug-related offenses Jan. 20 after Rogersville city police officers investigated a suspicious-persons complaint at the Comfort Inn motel on James Richardson Lane.
David Shaun Bernard, 38, of 2290 Lost Mountain Pike, was charged with maintaining a dwelling where narcotics are housed or sold, two counts of possession of a Schedule IV drug, possession of Schedule III drug and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Charged with initiating the process to manufacture methamphetamine and other offenses were William Leonard Brown, 30, and Shanna Danielle Moorefield, 27, both of Abingdon, Va.
'METH LAB COMPONENTS'
Rogersville police located three people who were found with "what was believed to potentially be meth lab components. The officers detained the individuals and requested the assistance of the Hawkins County Sheriff's Narcotics Unit," Hawkins County Sheriff Ronnie Lawson said in a news release.
Brown was found to be in possession of a container of crushed-up Ephedrine pills, which is the primary component in meth manufacturing, in addition to a small amount of marijuana and other drug paraphernalia.
All three individuals were staying in an on-site motel room that had been rented by Bernard, Lawson said.
"Upon entrance to the motel room, narcotics officers observed various items of drug paraphernalia, such as glass pipes with meth residue lying in plain view, as well as a cut-out line of what appeared to be methamphetamine," Lawson said.
Also seized were an assortment of non-prescribed pills, identified as Clonazepam, Carisoprodol (Soma) and Buprenorphine.
Clonazepam and Carisoprodol are Schedule IV controlled substances, and Buprenorphine is a Schedule III controlled substance.
A coat belonging to Moorefield was found to contain "a significant amount of red phosphorus, iodine crystals, crushed ephedrine pills and coffee filters," Lawson said.
"All stated components are items used in the 'Red P' method of manufacturing methamphetamine," he added.
The "Red P" method of manufacturing methamphetamine releases phosphine gas, which is an extremely lethal gas if inhaled.
During further investigation, it was determined that Moorefield and Brown had come to the motel in Moorefield's Pontiac Grand Prix car, which was located in the parking lot.
Because of the evidence present, narcotics officers applied for and received a search warrant for Moorefield's vehicle.
For public safety reasons, Moorefield's vehicle was towed from the scene prior to executing the search warrant.
During a search of the vehicle, two Mason jars were found to be concealed under the center console, as well as an assortment of pseudoephedrine pills, Lawson said.
One Mason jar contained a red-colored bi-layer flammable liquid, and the other jar contained multiple coffee filters soaking in a red-colored liquid authorities believed to contain red phosphorus, which is consistent with the "Red P" method of manufacturing methamphetamine, according to the release.
As narcotics officers dismantled and safely packaged the volatile hazardous materials, the Tennessee Methamphetamine and Pharmaceutical Task Force responded to the scene, as well as the Rogersville Fire Department, Hawkins County EMS and Hawkins County EMA.
All hazardous waste was safely packaged and removed from the scene, Lawson said.
Bernard, Brown and Moorefield have had initial court appearances.
As of Saturday, Brown and Bernard remained held in Hawkins County Jail on $100,000 bond each, while Moorefield was free on $100,000 bond.
In addition to being charged with initiating the process to manufacture methamphetamine, Moorefield is also charged with possession of a Schedule II drug, two counts of possession of a Schedule IV drug, possession of a Schedule III drug, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Brown is additionally charged with possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.