Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

April 11, 2013

Authorities halt alleged meth operation

Brent Brown
Greensburg Daily News

Greensburg — A drug investigation conducted earlier this week by the Greensburg Police Department and Westport Town Marshal’s Office resulted in the arrest of four Decatur County residents Wednesday.

Police executed a search warrant at 3910 South County Road 850 East early Wednesday morning and discovered multiple items related to the manufacture and use of methamphetamine as well as other illicit substances.

Following the search, Kyle M. Shields, 29, Cecil N. Thompson II, 33, Chay M. Lecher, 30, and Ashley R. Brewer, 30, were arrested and taken into police custody.

According to Charging Information filed Thursday in the Decatur Circuit Court, Shields faces a charge of attempted dealing (manufacturing) in methamphetamine, a class “B” felony, and a charge of possession of methamphetamine, a class “D” felony.

Brewer has been charged with possession of methamphetamine, while Lecher and Thompson each face a single count of visiting a common nuisance, a class “B” misdemeanor.

Members of the Greensburg Police Department and Decatur County Sheriff’s Department attempted to serve the search warrant at the residence, which was occupied by Shields and Brewer, shortly before 4 a.m. Wednesday. Officers forced entry into the residence when repeated attempts to alert the suspects of the presence of law enforcement authorities were ignored.

Investigators subsequently searched the residence and found drug-related material and paraphernalia in virtually every room. A Decatur County Sheriff’s deputy located a 35-gallon propane tank near the barn of the residence, which authorities later determined had been filled with anhydrous ammonia obtained through illegal means.

A news release from the Greensburg Police Department states the tank was leaking anhydrous ammonia, a potentially dangerous chemical typically used for agricultural purposes. The substance is also an integral component in the manufacture of methamphetamine.

Thompson and Lecher arrived at the residence later, after attempting to contact Shields via text message. Investigators believe the suspects may have previously engaged in drug use at the residence of Shields and Brewer.

A police report states Brewer told police in a recorded interview following her arrest that multiple individuals had visited her home in order to use methamphetamine and marijuana. Shields, who had been placed on probation for four years, stated the same in his interview with police. Both are alleged to have admitted to the use of methamphetamine at the residence.

All four suspects remained in the Decatur County Jail by press time Thursday and bond amounts, if any, had not been determined.

Investigators told the Daily News the investigation is continuing and that more arrests are likely.

“We would like to thank the residents of Decatur County for their continued support, tips and information, thus leading to the successful results of this investigation,” said Greensburg Chief of Police Stacey Chasteen through a press release. “We would also like to express our gratitude to the assisting law enforcement agencies and the Indiana State Police Meth Suppression team for their prompt response to the scene to properly dispose of the dangerous chemicals,” she continued.

Tips can be left at the Greensburg Police Department by calling 812-66CRIME or 812-663-3131 and asking to speak with a detective.

Contact: Brent Brown 812-663-3111 x7056