BAKERSFIELD — Police affidavits tell the full story of a meth-manufacturing bust in Bakersfield, and provide a glimpse into the routines of those with methamphetamine addictions.
Police arrested Corey and Rebecka Salls on Jan. 25. Both face two felony charges of manufacturing a regulated drug, two misdemeanor charges of child cruelty and one misdemeanor charge of methamphetamine possession. The felony charges carry the harshest sentence, up to 20 years in prison or a $1 million fine.
Vermont State Police Corporal George Rodriguez’s affidavit tells the story of their arrest. It began at Wal-Mart with two smurfers.
“Smurfers” are multiple individuals who purchase pseudoephedrine and ephedrine from multiple retail locations to avoid detection, and then pass the drugs to the methamphetamine manufacturer.
Pseudoephedrine is the key ingredient in methamphetamine. It is common in over-the-counter decongestants and allergy relief products. Other ingredients include solvents like ether or camping fuel, a drain cleaner such as lye or a brand name like Drano, lithium metal, from batteries, and ammonium nitrate from athletic cold packs or agricultural fertilizers.
The Wal-Mart pharmacy contacted Rodriguez on Jan. 16, to notify him that a man known to have an opiate addiction had attempted to purchase pseudoephedrine from the pharmacy, only to be turned away. His license was expired.
Read the full story of how police learned of the alleged meth lab in Friday’s Messenger, or subscribe to our digital edition.