Hancock DHS takes custody of 10 kids in two separate meth lab busts

Already facing a “crisis” with around 240 Hancock County children in some form of foster care, DHS workers had to take 10 more children out of their homes last week due to two separate meth lab busts.

In one case, the Department of Human Services (DHS) requested central dispatch for a unit to assist them when they made a call at Fenton-Dedeaux Road last week, which led to the arrest of four suspects for methamphetamine charges, Sheriff Steve Garber said.

Narcotics Division Director Major Matt Karl said, “Upon a DHS check of the camper, the DHS worker discovered a prescription bottle with a small plastic bag in it containing possible illegal drugs. Agent David Dear was called into the camper to check the bottle and believed it contained crystal meth. Agent Dear and Deputy C.J. Lick, were assisting DHS. Dear received a written permission to check the camper. Dear and Lick discovered precursors used in the manufacture of methamphetamine, and even found precursors under a baby’s crib.

“There were two males and two females at the location. Since there were approximately six small children having access to the camper, DHS took custody of them,” Karl said.

“Charles Lee Collier, 38, and Brandy Collier, 33, both of Fenton-Dedeaux Road, were arrested and charged with possession of two or more precursors to manufacture a controlled substance (methamphetamine) and also with the generation of waste in the manufacture of a controlled substance. Their bond was set at $100,000 each.”

In addition, William Thomas Collier, 31, also Fenton-Dedeaux Road, and Victoria Ann Ladner, 38, who gave a Fenton-Dedeaux Road address, were arrested, too. They were charged with possession of two or more precursors with the intent to manufacture a controlled substance (methamphetamine), the generation of waste in the manufacture of a controlled substance and growing and cultivating marijuana. Their bond was set at $100,000 each.

“William Collier told Officers that he lived across the street and did not have anything but a marijuana plant growing. He gave a written permission for the officers to check his property and they immediately discovered a meth lab placed next to a baby’s crib. Both William Collier and Victoria Ladner were then arrested,” Karl said.

He added, “All subjects arrested tested positive for meth at the jail.”

In a separate case, a North Hancock County resident was arrested last week and faces several illegal drug charges after central dispatch received a welfare call which led to DHS taking four young children into foster custody, Garber said.

Karl said, “Jason Edward Bynum, 33, Road 361, north Hancock County, was arrested and charged with possession of two or more precursors to manufacture methamphetamine and the generation of waste in the manufacture of a controlled substance. Since Bynum was out on bond from other districts, he was lodged in jail without bond.

“Deputy C.J. Lick and Agent David Dear answered the Central Dispatch call. Agent Dear recognized the subject and received permission to search the residence. There also were four very young children at the residence. During the search, precursors used in the manufacture of methamphetamine were found, in addition to methamphetamine,” Karl said.

“DHS arrived and took custody pf the four young children. Bynum was arrested and booked at the Hancock County Booking Facility with no bond.”

Deputy C.J. Lick, Deputy Eric Moran and Deputy Mark Barraclough assisted in the arrest, Dear said.

BY Ellis C. Cuevas

The Sea Coast Echo

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