By Sally Voth -- firstname.lastname@example.org
For the second time in less than a week, Shenandoah County drug investigators have raided a suspected meth lab.
However, it's not thought the two investigations are related to each other, Shenandoah County Sheriff's Maj. Scott Proctor said Monday afternoon.
Agents with both the Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Task Force and the Rockingham-Harrisonburg Drug Task Force (RUSH) raided 64 Gray Owl Lane, Edinburg, Monday morning after learning of a potential meth lab there, he said.
He said the chemicals used to manufacture the highly-addictive stimulant, including pseudoephedrine, lye, iodine crystals and muriatic acid, were seized, along with other supplies and containers.
Two residents of the house, Steven Alan Brooks, 20, and Mitchell Lee Markley Jr., 29, were arrested, according to Proctor.
He said Brooks is being held without bail at the Shenandoah County Jail on a charge of conspiracy to manufacture methamphetamine. Markley was transferred to the Rockingham County Jail for a warrant out of that county for failure to appear in court, according to Proctor.
He said other charges are pending against the two and other suspects.
"It's believed that they've been manufacturing meth in this residence for about an eight to 12-month period," Proctor said.
Rockingham County Sheriff Bryan Hutcheson confirmed via email that his agency was looking into more than one meth lab on Monday, but declined to provide further information on an ongoing operation.
Monday's raid comes six days after task force agents and Strasburg police, among other agencies, shut down another alleged meth-making operation.
A town officer and a Winchester police detective had gone to 710 E. King St. on May 15 to talk to Philip Eugene Chadwell, 22, about a burglary at a Winchester Domino's Pizza, Winchester police Sgt. Frank Myrtle said last week.
They called in task force officers after spotting suspected meth manufacturing supplies, he said.
Drug agents spent most of that day at the King Street home, where Strasburg Police Chief Tim Sutherly said evidence was found suggesting Chadwell also had made bombs.
Sutherly said Chadwell confessed to making explosives and trying to make meth.
Chadwell faces a charge of manufacturing methamphetamine in Shenandoah County General District Court, and burglary, grand larceny and felony destruction of property charges in Winchester.