Fire leads police to meth lab in Maryville motel

Fire leads police to meth lab in Maryville motel

Roger Pete Porter (Source: Blount County Sheriff's Office) Roger Pete Porter (Source: Blount County Sheriff's Office)

MARYVILLE (WATE) - A fire in a Maryville motel room led to meth charges for the man inside.

Roger Pete Porter, 44, of Maryville, was taken into custody at the Princess Motel on U.S. Highway 441 South around 2:15 a.m. Tuesday morning.

Deputies responded to a fire alarm at the business and traced the fire to one of the units.

Maryville police entered the room and found what appeared to be a meth lab.

Investigators with the Fifth Judicial Drug Task Force arrived, and after interviewing Porter, they learned Porter was in the process of manufacturing meth when the lab caught on fire.

A person in a neighboring room was treated for smoke inhalation, after he attempted to extinguish the fire with a fire extinguisher before firefighters arrived on scene.

Porter and a female who was in the room with him were decontaminated at the scene. 

The Tennessee Methamphetamine Task Force was on the scene to dispose of the hazardous materials.

Porter is being held on a $75,000 bond at the Blount County Detention Facility.

He is scheduled to be in court on Feb. 20.

He was charged with initiating the process of the manufacture of meth. The female with him was taken into custody for investigation, but released with no charges.

This marks the sixth meth lab the Drug Task Force has worked this year.

The Fifth Judicial Drug Task Force is comprised of deputies and officers with the Blount County Sheriff's Office, the Alcoa Police Department, and the Maryville Police Department.

All members of the Fifth Judicial Drug Task Force are members of the Tennessee Methamphetamine Task Force.

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