A KPD officer escorts Kassie Shelley across a restaurant parking lot on John B. Dennis Thursday. Ned Jilton II photo.
KINGSPORT — An attempted traffic stop for speeding in Kingsport has led to the discovery of a suspected meth lab, with the driver fleeing the car and running into a wooded area before being arrested.
The incident began shortly after 2 p.m. on South John B. Dennis Highway. Kingsport Police Department Officer Aaron Grimes said he observed a southbound Ford Tempo traveling 66 mph in a 45 mph zone. Grimes said he attempted to conduct a stop at Moreland Drive, but the suspects’ car continued to the parking lot of Burger King, 1332 S. John B. Dennis.
Grimes said that as the car rolled to a stop, the male driver jumped out and ran. Meanwhile the female passenger exited the vehicle and ran to Grimes, telling the officer to “stop.”
The woman was detained in the parking lot while a search was launched for the driver. Police said he fled through the undeveloped lots behind Burger King and dashed into a wooded area. He was apprehended about 30 minutes later on nearby Happy Hill Road, where officers were waiting for him to emerge from the woods.
Police identified the driver as Dustin P. Tyndall, 26, of 1125 Dorothy St., Kingsport.
Kingsport police said the female passenger, identified as Kassie Shelley, 20, 725 Boone St. Kingsport, admitted there was a methamphetamine lab in the vehicle. A search of the car located a bag in the back seat that allegedly contained meth lab precursors and a bottle already containing chemicals and lithium strips.
Due to the volatile nature of such cooks, police blocked the parking lot of Burger King and awaited response from a HazMat unit — which first had to decontaminate Tyndall.
Tyndall was charged with driving on a revoked license second offense, speeding, violation of the seat belt law, evading arrest, initiation of the meth manufacturing process, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Shelley was charged with initiation of the meth manufacturing process and possession of drug paraphernalia.