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Dangerous ‘Red P’ meth labs found at Rogersville motel

January 26th, 2014 3:00 pm by Jeff Bobo

Dangerous ‘Red P’ meth labs found at Rogersville motel

ROGERSVILLE — Police allegedly seized components for a highly dangerous “red phosphorus” meth lab at a Rogersville motel room last week, as well as two active labs in the motel parking lot.

Last Monday morning the Rogersville Police Department responded to a suspicious person report at the Comfort Inn Motel, 128 James Richardson Lane, Rogersville.

Upon their arrival RPD officers detained three motel guests who were allegedly found to be in possession of red phosphorus (Red P) meth lab components and ingredients.

The Hawkins County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Unit was then called to the scene.

Among those arrested were: Shanna Danielle Moorefield, 27, 359 Lowery Road, Abingdon, VA.; William Leonard Brown, 30,  507 Butt Road, Abingdon, VA.; David Shaun Bernard, 38, 2290 Loss Mountain Pike, Greeneville.

According to a report released Sunday by Sheriff Ronnie Lawson, Brown was initially found to be in possession of a container of crushed-up ephedrine pills, which is the primary component in meth manufacturing, as well as a small amount of marijuana and other drug paraphernalia. 

“Upon entrance to the motel room, narcotics officers observed various items of drug paraphernalia, such as glass pipes with meth residue lying in plain view, as well as a cutout line of what appeared to be meth,” Lawson said. 

Officers also allegedly seized an assortment of Schedule IV and Schedule III pills which weren’t prescribed.

A coat, determined to belong to Moorefield, was allegedly found to contain a significant amount of red phosphorus, iodine crystals, crushed ephedrine pills and coffee filters. 

Lawson said those are all components of the “Red P” method of meth manufacturing which releases phosphine gas, and is “extremely lethal” gas if inhaled.

A vehicle parking outside the motel which belongs to Moorefield was towed away to be searched safely away from the public.

Inside the vehicle deputies allegedly found two mason jars concealed under the center console, as well as an assortment of pseudoephedrine pills. 

One Mason jar contained a red-colored bilayer flammable liquid, and the other jar contained multiple coffee filters soaking in a red-colored liquid believed to contain red phosphorus, which Lawson said is consistent with the “Red P” method of manufacturing meth. 

The Tennessee Methamphetamine and Pharmaceutical Task Force responded to the scene, as well as the Rogersville Fire Department, Hawkins County EMS and Hawkins County EMA to be on standby while the Red P labs were disposed of.

Moorefield was charged with initiating the process to manufacture meth, possession of meth, two counts of possession of Schedule IV narcotics, possession of Schedule III narcotics and possession of drug paraphernalia. She was released from the Hawkins County Jail on $100,000 bond.

Brown was charged with initiating the process to manufacture meth, possession of marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia, and remained held in the Hawkins County Jail on $100,000 bond.

Bernard was charged with maintaining a dwelling where narcotics are housed or sold, two counts of possession of Schedule IV narcotics, possession of Schedule III narcotics, and possession of drug paraphernalia, and he remains held in the Hawking County Jail on $100,000 bond.


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