Top from left to right: Kenneth Messimer, Ruby Messimer; Bottom: Kenneth Gibson (source: Roane County Sheriff’s Office)
Top from left to right: Samuel Johnson, Christopher Powers, Nancy Johnson, Tiffany Johnson; Bottom from left to right: Randella Coffey Lachelle, Ashley Crabtree, Christopher Jenkin (source: Roane County Sheriff’s Office)
KINGSTON (WATE) - Authorities in Roane County have arrested 10 adults in connection with two different meth lab busts, one which resulted in an apartment complex being evacuated.
Several residents of the 100 Oaks Apartment complex are looking for a place to stay, after their apartments were quarantined Thursday night because authorities found a meth lab in a second floor apartment.
"They just told us to get out and hopefully hear something by Tuesday, and hopefully we'll get to come back," said neighbor Kerrie Latshaw.
Those arrested at the apartment include seven adults: Samuel Johnson, 27; Randella Coffey, 21; Christopher Jenkins, 25; Christopher Powers, 31; Tiffany Johnson, 24; Nancy Johnson, 65; and Ashley Crabtree, 27.
A 6-year-old and 3-month-old child were also located at the apartment and taken into DCS custody.
Authorities said upon arrival they found one pot meth lab inside one of the apartments, and another was thrown off the balcony as authorities arrived.
"We had gotten information that there was possibly meth lab at that location and low and behold, officers get there and that was the case," said Roane County Sheriffs Chief Deputy Tim Phillips.
Kerrie Latshaw lives in the apartment right below where authorities found a lab, she had no clue there was anything going on.
One of the men arrested lived in the apartment where the meth bust occurred.
"I didn't smell anything, and I just saw him on occasion, coming up and down the stairs. I didn't know him that well. I'm shocked, all our neighbors are shocked," said Latshaw.
On Friday afternoon, another meth lab was discovered at a house outside Philadelphia as authorities, along with the U.S. Marshals, were making sex-offender registry check-ups.
Deputies detained Kenneth Messimer in the bathroom of the residence as he was attempting to destroy evidence.
A search of the residence revealed two additional adults, Ruby Messimer, wife of Kenneth Messimer, and Kenneth Gibson of Ten Mile.
Two children, a 12-year-old male and an 8-year-old male, were also located at the residence
"When they (officers) walked up to the porch, they could see Mr. Messimer physically in the process of making meth and going through one of the stages in the process," said Phillips.
Between the two meth lab busts, a total of four children at both scenes were taken into DCS custody and transported to the Roane Medical Center for further evaluation.
Kenneth and Ruby Messimer are both being charged with two counts of child abuse and several drug-related charges.