Crime & Courts

3 charged in Lincoln meth case

Two men and a woman were charged in Lincoln County this week with operating a methamphetamine lab.

Lincoln County sheriff’s deputies say the suspects’ lab was at a public housing unit in Lincolnton. It was the fourth meth lab discovered this year in Lincoln, authorities said.

Deputies said they tracked Internet-based purchases of pseudoephedrine and identified several people who had purchased meth precursors. Officers began surveillance on the suspects and said they followed them Tuesday afternoon to a residence in the 200 block of Mauney Drive in Lincolnton.

Investigators asked occupants for permission to search the apartment, and officers said they found evidence of a one-pot meth lab. They reported finding empty packs of pseudoephedrine, cold packs and lithium batteries, all of which are used to produce meth.

A State Bureau of Investigation team was called in to clear the apartment and remove the chemicals. No injuries were reported.

Charged in the case:

“Our investigators will continue to use the NPlex tool,” said Lt. Jason Reid, referring to the Internet-based program to track purchases of meth precursors. He said the tool “is very handy for law enforcement if used in a proactive way.”