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Roane County Sheriff's Office uncovers meth lab

7:27 PM, Dec 20, 2012   |    comments
  • Authorities found about 350 pounds of ammonium nitrate at the meth lab in Rockwood.
  • Every day containers were used to store hazardous chemicals.
    
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The Roane County Sheriff's Office has uncovered an elaborate methamphetamine lab.

Through an anonymous tip, deputies found it deep within the woods of Rockford Wednesday.

Officials are investigating who is responsible for the meth lab. According to Chief Deputy Tim Phillips, they do have some leads.

They are also investigating who owns the property, a very rural area near Joiner Hollow Road.  

Phillips said the lab was capable of cooking 20 to 30 pounds of meth at a time.

It was an anhydrous ammonia lab; officers found about 350 pounds of ammonium nitrate.

Phillips says these types of meth labs are not as common in East Tennessee as they are in the western part of the state, but authorities are seeing an increase in the area.

He also said it appears those who made were running the lab were living in a tent where the lab was set up. Sleeping bags were found on the property as well as a cooler of food and a propane heater to keep warm at night.

"When I started getting the details from the meth guy and he was letting me know everything they had found, I was pretty shocked because we haven't seen anything like that around here as far as I've been working here," Chief Deputy Phillips said.

He went on to say, "I've been around meth labs since around '99, and this is one of the biggest ones I've ever seen."

On Thursday, authorities were at a one-pot meth lab.

However, according to Phillips, they have another tip on a meth lab that could be just as large as the one uncovered on Wednesday.

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