By Jared Ritz
Two more people have been arrested in connection with a suspected methamphetamine operatoin in Havre, law enforcement officials said.
Arrest warrants were served on Donald S. Sanders, 31, and Jeremy Lee Mork, 33, on Tuesday evening. Both had a first appearance in court Wednesday morning, when they were each charged with operation of an unlawful clandestine laboratory, a felony, according to documents filed in Justice Court.
The arrests stemmed from an investigation of Leslie Felton and Shawn Kessler, whose home on Third Street in Havre was raided on June 6, according to the Tri-Agency Task Force. Felton had met Kessler in Washington state and the two moved to Havre in January, according to court documents.
Eight task force agents conducted the raid after the task force received a tip that a woman had tried to buy large amounts of matches and a case of ephedrine from a local service station, according to a criminal complaint filed in court. The service station employee person who tipped them off subsequently picked out Felton's picture in a photo lineup, the document said.
After learning her address, the agents searched Dumpsters in the area and found items commonly used in making meth, including materials showing that the first step of the cooking process had already been finished, the criminal complaint said. They also found multiple syringes, chemicals, a recipt with Kessler's name on it and a bill addressed to Felton, the document said. Based on these findings, the task force obtained a search warrant for the Third Street residence.
According to the criminal complaint against Felton, she told a task force member after her arrest that the raid occurred while a batch of meth was being produced and that she flushed much of the evidence down the toilet.
On June 21 in state District Court, Felton and Kessler were charged with the operation of an unlawful clandestine laboratory.
Sanders' arrest stemmed from an incident on June 13, when Tri-Agency Task Force agents inspected a trailer south of Havre that Sanders had just moved out of, according to a criminal complaint filed against Sanders. Felton and Kessler had lived in the trailer before Sanders moved there in May. Agents discovered chemicals and tubing commonly used in the production of meth at the residence, according to court documents.
Sanders told officers during an interview on June 19 that Kessler had brought the chemicals to the trailer, according to the criminal complaint.
Mork was interviewed by agents on June 20. He told them he had known Kessler and Felton for about four weeks, and that he had purchased for them six boxes of cold tablets and a can of acetone, according to a criminal complaint filed in court. Both are commonly used in the manufacture of methamphetamine.