Officers: Home had meth lab, child inside

Published 2:00 am Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Four Escambia County residents were taken into custody Thursday on Old Atmore Road, between Atmore and Flomaton, for allegedly cooking meth with a 2-year-old in the home.
According to information from the Escambia County Sheriff’s Department, Cassandra Smith, 23, Joseph “Jo Jo” Bell, 22, Steven Bell, 26, all of 3487 Old Atmore Road, and Mark Faulk, 26 of 313 Fowler Lane, were arrested after 21St Judicial Drug Task Force Agents Brandon Burkett and Adam Johnson, along with Flomaton Police Department officers, received information about a working meth lab at Smith’s home.
According to DTF agents, they made contact Smith outside of her home, where they were able to smell “a strong chemical odor coming from inside the residence.”
After being informed that no one else was in the home, agents discovered Steven Bell in the residence, as well as Faulk attempting to exit the home through a back door.
Agents also discovered the 2-year-old child, which they immediately removed from the scene for safety purposes while a search warrant was obtained.
DTF Agent Scott Walden was later able to enter the home, where an active meth lab was found and secured. Items that were discovered inside the residence were consistent with those routinely used in the illegal manufacturing of crystal methamphetamines, agents said.
All four suspects were arrested and transported to the Escambia County Detention Center in Brewton. Each suspect was charged with the following: Unlawful possession of a controlled substance, synthetic (spice); unlawful possession of a controlled substance (meth); unlawful manufacturing of a controlled substance in the first degree; unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia; chemically endangering the welfare of a child.
As of Tuesday afternoon, Smith was released on $100,000 bond. All three male subjects remained incarcerated on $100,000 bond each.

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