Deputies raid suspected Nacogdoches County meth lab

Courtesy: Nacogdoches County Constable- Precinct 4
Courtesy: Nacogdoches County Constable- Precinct 4

NACOGDOCHES COUNTY, TX (NEWS RELEASE) - The Nacogdoches County Constable Office precinct 4 has executed a search warrant late Monday night that has lead to the seizure of a methamphetamine laboratory and more than a pound of methamphetamine. The search warrant was conducted in the  Melrose south subdivision located on County Road 408. Constable Bridges stated that his office obtained a search warrant for the residence of Tommy Ray Smith, Junior after the constable office established probable cause for the warrant.

Constable Bridges stated that the investigation started last week after Deputy Constable Marble conducted a traffic stop of Tommy Smith on Highway 21 East. At that time Marble conducted a search of Smith's vehicle and found some apparent items that made us believe that Smith was possibly involved in methamphetamine.

The constable office conducted surveillance of Smith residence which gave us a lot more information. We found that Smith was cooking methamphetamine in his travel trailer and using anhydrous ammonia as one of the main sources for the ingredients.

On Monday night around 9:30 p.m. the Constable Office executed the search warrant. While outside the trailer Deputies could smell the odor of chemicals. Constable Bridges advised that forced entry had to be made after the suspect locked the doors and refused to come out of the trailer. Officers found the suspect holding a two liter bottle that contained anhydrous ammonia as well as other chemicals. This bottle was in the process of cooking methamphetamine, which can be very dangerous in these stages.

Constable Bridges advised that over a pound of methamphetamine was recovered from the scene along with numerous chemicals such as muratic acid, sulfuric acid and anhydrous ammonia along with other components for a methamphetamine laboratory.

Due to the dangerous chemical, anhydrous ammonia which was found on scene the Constable's Office called in DPS haz-mat response unit to assist with the scene. Deputies along with haz-mat personnel had to use respirators and air monitors to safely process the scene.

Tommy Ray Smith Jr., 27 years of age from Melrose, Texas and Amanda Atkins, 34 years of age from Melrose were arrested for possession of certain chemicals with intent to manufacture a controlled substance, 2nd felony. Both subjects were booked into the Nacogdoches County Jail.

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