Muskogee police report record number of meth labs
BY KENDRICK MARSHALL World Staff Writer
Monday, December 10, 2012
MUSKOGEE — Police have recovered and destroyed 292 meth labs so far this year, a record number for the city.
Muskogee police Lt. Andy Simmons said the rise in meth lab discoveries are a result of the police department’s development of a street team and cooperation with the Muskogee County Sheriff’s Office.
Last year, 173 meth labs were discovered, said Simmons. When the unit began tackling meth labs in 2009 as the “shake-and-bake” method started to become prominent, just 32 were found.
“The amount of addicts and the availability of ingredients have something to do with that,” Simmons said about the spike in meth labs citywide.
Since then, two additional officers have been added to the special investigations unit to patrol known hot spots and violent areas in an effort to prevent meth trafficking, Simmons said.
“A lot of crime are associated with meth,” he said. “People break into homes, vehicles and beat up others to get money in exchange for the drugs.”
“We do this every day. It’s a daily battle,” Simmons said.
As previously reported in the Tulsa World, the number of meth labs in Tulsa is down this year. Tulsa police had responded to 274 discarded meth labs this year through Nov. 25. In all of 2011, police cleaned up 429 labs.