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Kingsport police arrest three in meth lab bust; baby tested for exposure

Rain Smith • Jul 26, 2010 at 2:31 AM

Three people have been arrested after a methamphetamine lab was discovered in a Kingsport apartment where a five-month-old child was present.

The Department of Children's Services and the child's mother, who lives in another apartment within the complex, took the baby to Holston Valley Medical Center. A police report said the child would be tested for exposure to dangerous chemicals.

According to an arrest report, at 10:22 Sunday night Kingsport police responded to a drug complaint at Model City Apartments, 1000 Stonegate Road. Officers knocked on the door of apartment G-5, with it being answered by resident Timothy Castle, 21.

Police say they explained they were responding to a drug complaint, with Castle saying nothing illegal was present. He allegedly invited officers in to check the residence, with police entering to find a woman in the living room holding the baby.

Within a bedroom police allegedly found a small box emitting a strong chemical odor. It reportedly contained a pink substance, plastic tubing and lithium batteries.

Police report recognizing the materials as part of an operational meth lab. Vice detectives, the Kingsport Fire Department and the Tennessee Methamphetamine Task Force were called to respond and process the scene.

Fearing the child was, "possibly exposed to lab components," it was taken to the hospital for testing. Police say a DCS worker and the child's mother, who's address is listed as Model City Apartment, unit E-13, transported the child. The arrest report did not contain any further information on it's condition.

All three adults present in the apartment were arrested and charged with reckless endangerment, initiation of a process intended to result in the manufacture of methamphetamine, maintaining a dwelling where illegal narcotics are sold stored or used and possession of drug paraphernalia. Along with Castle, they are identified as Brittney Benton, 20, also of the residence, and Donald Wooten, 27, of 310 Ridge Drive, lot No. 9, Piney Flats.

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