Athens man facing drug charges after meth lab fire - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Athens man facing drug charges after meth lab fire

Source: Limestone County Sheriff Source: Limestone County Sheriff
(WAFF) -

An Athens man is facing multiple drug charges, after two methamphetamine labs caught fire Friday evening at his residence, where sheriff’s deputies were attempting to execute an arrest warrant on unrelated charges.

Keith Elmo Taylor, 48, is charged with Manufacturing a Controlled Substance 1st Degree, Distribution of a Controlled Substance, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, and Unauthorized Use of a Vehicle.

Deputy Danny Craig went to Taylor’s residence on Smith Road to execute an arrest warrant on Taylor for Unauthorized Use of a Vehicle. When Craig arrived, Taylor was sitting on the rear steps of the home. Upon seeing the deputy, the suspect ran inside. As Craig pursued Taylor, he observed an active meth lab in the rear of the residence. Additional deputies arrived at the location, and found the suspect hiding in an air conditioner vent in the hallway.

After narcotics investigator Jamie King arrived to examine the meth lab, it caught fire, but was quickly extinguished by personnel at the scene. While investigators were removing flammable materials, the second lab caught fire and also had to be extinguished. It was later determined that the fires were caused by exposed lithium strips, which ignite when in contact with moisture. Investigators requested assistance from Piney Chapel Fire Department, prior to further investigation.

Deputies obtained a search warrant and located a total of 14 meth labs, 18 grams of meth, two gas generators, over 30 syringes, a small amount of marijuana, and various paraphernalia and precursors for cooking meth.

Taylor is currently being held in the Limestone County Jail. Bond has not yet been set on the distribution charge.

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