Commonwealth Journal

Local News

March 6, 2008

Arrest made in meth lab bust

Somerset — Two children were rescued in a meth lab bust in northern Pulaski County late Wednesday night, resulting in at least one arrest so far.

Bige Baker, 35, of Cordell Drive in Burnside, was arrested and charged with manufacturing methamphetamine. He was lodged in the Pulaski County Detention Center.

Agents with the Lake Cumberland Area Drug Task Force discovered a working meth lab operating out of a garage located beside a trailer on Dixon-Smith Road near Science Hill Wednesday night. The unattached garage had been damaged by a previous fire.

Baker was found inside wearing a respirator while pouring chemicals into separate containers when agents took him into custody. It was determined that Baker was involved in the production of anhydrous ammonia, a pre-agent used in producing meth.

The meth lab was very volatile due to the anhydrous presence. David Gilbert, director of the Task Force, said that this is the second most dangerous working lab he has been in during the past five years; to compare, another Science Hill lab discovered several years ago was extremely dangerous due to the enclosed space with no ventilation, but didn’t have the anhydrous production going on, which is extremely flammable and produces a high risk of kidney failure via its toxic qualities.

The occupants, Jimmy and Juanita Hafley, were inside the residence with two young children, ages 8 and 13. The children were turned over to the Cabinet for Families and Children at the scene.

A large amount of firearms — approximately 20 such weapons — were seized along with other evidence.

The lab was cleaned up and hazardous materials removed by agents of the Lake Cumberland Area Drug Task Force, Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office, Eubank Fire Department, Somerset-Pulaski County Emergency Response Team and Emergency Management Services. The Somerset Fire/EMS Department also assisted at the scene.

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