(02/27/2006)
Charges related to the operating of a clandestine meth lab have been dropped against an Arnoldsburg man because State Police made an illegal search of his vehicle.

Rickey Allen Carpenter, 24, was stopped on Clover Ridge in November, 2004 by Trooper G. K. Walsh of the Spencer Detachment.

Walsh had Carpenter's vehicle impounded after he charged him with speeding, improper registration and no proof of insurance.

A towing company later called the officer to advise him of items they discovered in the trunk of Carpenter's 1987 Buick.

They reported finding bottles of hydrogen peroxide, acetone, Coleman fuel, clear plastic tubing and a digital thermometer, items used in the making of meth.

State Police then filed charges against Carpenter.

Roane County prosecutor Mark Sergent asked Judge Tom Evans that the case be dismissed for lack of evidence because trooper Walsh did not have probable cause to search his vehicle.

Judge Evans granted the dismissal and Carpenter was released from jail.

YOUTH ARRESTED IN STOLEN TRUCK

The Roane County Sheriff's Department, conducting traffic checks near the Roane-Calhoun line, arrested a 17-year-old Cleveland youth last week driving a stolen truck following a chase.

The youth crashed the truck in Clay County, a short distance from where the chase began.

The sheriff's department said they are looking into whether the youth was connected to a recent number of stolen trucks in Calhoun and Clay County.


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