Report Highlights a Spike in Allen County Meth Labs

Published 01/29 2014 09:17PM

Updated 01/30 2014 08:52AM

Some alarming numbers to report about the growing meth problem in the Hoosier State. Data released Wednesday from the Fort Wayne-Allen County Department of Health highlights the problem of meth addiction and production in our area.

Meth arrests are frequent in northeast Indiana, and the number of meth labs are increasing.

"Talking to my meth suppression team members, they think they're gonna set another record this year," says Captain Kevin Hunter with the Fort Wayne Police Departments' Vice/Narcotics Division.

The new data shows a 400% increase in meth lab reports since 2008 in Allen County. The number of meth labs reported doubled from 32 in 2012 to 64 in 2013. Of those, seven labs involved children in 2013.

Master Sergeant Andy Smith with the Indiana State Police Meth Suppression Section says meth is so popular because it's highly addictive and easy to make.

"If you can follow a cake recipe, you can do this. You can either go buy or steal everything you need in about 15 minutes in a store," said Master Sergeant Smith.

Indiana State Police have at least one trooper assigned to each district to handle meth investigations. These troopers work closely with the IMAGE Drug Task Force and local law enforcement.

"We try to do the best that we can, but it's such an epidemic that as we do more and more to try to curb the problem, more and more people are being addicted to it on a daily basis," said Master Sergeant Smith.

Captain Kevin Hunter says new laws will help combat the meth problem. He hopes state legislators will make pseudoephedrine, the main ingredient in meth, a prescription-only drug.

"In the states that have done that, Oregon being one of them, their meth problem significantly decreased once they made that a prescription-only drug," said Captain Hunter.

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