Police: Man used home as meth lab

By Melonie Flomer

June 20, 2014

ROCKINGHAM — Police say they found all the makings of a former meth lab in a 27-year-old city man’s home.

Rockingham police and State Bureau of Investigation agents arrested Kevin Anthony Freeman at the 102 Aslington St. house Thursday afternoon after a search turned up hoses, chemicals and other items used to cook methamphetamine, Police Chief Billy Kelly said.

Someone tipped police off to possible drug activity in the house, Kelly said, and officers stopped by to investigate.

“When they arrived,” Kelly said, “they conducted an initial search by just looking around, talking to neighbors. They know what they’re looking for in terms of items commonly used to make meth. They found enough evidence to get a search warrant signed by a judge, and that’s when they found precursor chemicals, hoses and other items on the property. There was also evidence of methamphetamine that had been manufactured there previously.”

Freeman was charged with one felony count each of possession or distribution of precursor chemicals and manufacture of methamphetamine.

Records show Freeman was convicted of using or possessing drug paraphernalia and maintaining a place for a controlled substance in Richmond County on March 26, 2012. He received a suspended sentence and completed his probation, according to the N.C. Division of Adult Correction, and has not served prison time.

Authorities discovered 13 meth labs in Richmond County last year, according to SBI figures. Neighboring Anson County had 30 labs busted, the third-highest number among North Carolina’s 100 counties.

The Tar Heel State saw 561 meth lab busts in 2013, a 22-percent increase from 2012.

Freeman was still in the Richmond County Jail on $25,000 secured bond late Friday. He is scheduled to appear in county district court on June 26.

Reach reporter Melonie Flomer at 910-997-3111, ext. 15.