While attempting to serve an arrest warrant on another man, Barbour County sheriff's deputies arrested a Philippi man Monday after discovering items necessary to operate a methamphetamine lab.
Mark Wayne Thompson, 24, of Little Hacker's Creek Road, is being held in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail in lieu of $50,000 bond on a charge of operating or attempting to operate a clandestine drug lab.
According to the police report, deputies went to Thompson's residence shortly after noon Monday in an attempt to serve an arrest warrant of another person who they believed frequented Thompson's residence. After being granted permission to search the house, deputies discovered an open backpack on the floor behind a kitchen bar. The deputies noticed coffee filters and plastic tubing in the bag. Thompson was detained, and written permission to continue the search in the house was granted by his wife, Stacy. Stacy Thompson was not charged during the course of Monday's events.
A further search of the backpack revealed a hair dryer, bottle cap glued to plastic tubing, light bulbs, grocery bags and a sandwich bag containing a white, powdery substance, according to the report.
Deputies continued their investigation of the residence and found other items associated with the manufacture of methamphetamine, including a mirror with white, powdery substance upon it, the report stated.
According to the report, both Mark and Stacy Thompson said the items were used for methamphetamine production.
"The sheriff's office has been working with other agencies in the county and surrounding counties on the clandestine lab issue," Barbour County Sheriff J.W. Hawkins stated in a press release. "The number of labs reported in the area is currently on the rise. If you suspect someone in your area is cooking meth, contact law enforcement. Meth labs are very dangerous to citizens and the environment. We need your help in busting up these labs."
Thompson was arraigned before Barbour County Magistrate Tina Mouser. The West Virginia State Police assisted at the scene of the incident.
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