Narcotics agents seize 21 meth labs in 8 days

Stewart

Toulme

PASCAGOULA

Jackson County narcotics agents over the weekend made nine meth-related arrests and in the last eight days seized a record-setting 21 meth labs, Curtis Spiers, commander of the Narcotics Task Force of Jackson County said.

“We’ve already doubled the number of meth labs found in the first two months of this year in the past eight days,” Spiers said Monday. “They were scattered throughout the county, but primarily in the northeast corner of Jackson County near the George County line.”

Narcotics agents suspect that some of the seized meth labs are being dumped by meth cooks and users from the George County area. As a result, Spiers said, his agents are working large amounts of overtime while the meth sites are cleared.

“It’s taking a toll on our manpower,” Spiers said. “Cleanup is super labor intensive, and it’s dangerous to our community.”

Narcotics agents are hoping new legislation taking effect in April that prohibits the sale of pseudoephedrine – the prime ingredient in meth – without a prescription will hinder the meth trade.

“Everybody is tired of hearing about meth,” Spiers said. “I’m sick and tired of it. If I never heard the word meth again, that would be fine for me, but it’s our cross to bear. We can’t do this alone. We’re just a small group trying to battle this in Jackson County, and we rely on the public’s help.”

And tips led to the majority of the latest arrests, including the arrests of Escatawpa chiropractor Brady Toulme and his girlfriend, Callie Simmons Stewart, each charged with meth manufacturing, meth possession, possession of meth precursors and generation of hazardous waste, all within 1,500 feet of a church. Toulme’s office, Toulme Family Chiropractic Clinic, is at 8820 Mississippi 613.

Others arrested on meth-related charges over the weekend are: Robbie Joe Spears, Terrance McKinney and Karla Burtt, charged with one count each of meth manufacturing, possession of precursors and generation of hazardous waste; David Mabry and Shon McGorden, charged with one count each of meth manufacturing and generation of hazardous waste; and Christopher Dolan and David Keene, charged with meth possession.

In January and February, agents seized a total of 24 meth labs. This month, agents have seized 27 meth labs.

The Task Force comprises officers from the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department, the Pascagoula, Gautier, Ocean Springs and Moss Point police departments and the Bureau of Narcotics.

Tips: call 769-3302 or e-mail taskforcetips@cableone.net.

By MARGARET BAKER – mbbaker@sunherald.com
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