Herald JournalHoward Lake-Waverly Herald, May 27, 2002

Busts yield meth arrests in both HL and Waverly

By Lynda Jensen

Complaints of a petroleum-like smell radiating from a unit at the Howard Lake Apartments resulted in three people being charged with conspiracy to manufacture methamphetamine Friday.

Brett Michael Wimmer, 19, and Jan Marie Bapp, 33, both of Howard Lake, were arrested along with Caryn Nieskens, 41, of Maple Lake for first degree conspiracy to manufacture a controlled substance. They are not tenants of the apartment.

The trio were at the apartment of a vulnerable adult living there, and found with glassware, trace amounts of meth, and other manufacturing materials, according to the Wright County Drug Task Force.

Previously, a search of Bapp's Howard Lake residence in April revealed some materials used to package meth, as well as drug paraphernalia, according to the Wright County Drug Task Force.

The Howard Lake Police Department received tips before the bust occurred.

Police Chief Mike Simmons noted that if a meth lab was in operation at the Howard Lake Apartments, a potential explosion or flash fire could have affected nearly every person living there, since the apartment in question was on the main floor.

Fumes from making meth are toxic, according to the drug task force.

Taking advantage of a vulnerable adult is common practice for drug dealers, Simmons said. In fact, law enforcement in bigger cities have problems with dealers taking over vulnerable adults' apartments, where they sell from the apartment. This makes it more difficult to bust the dealer, he said.

The Howard Lake Apartments do not have a past history of drug activity otherwise, Simmons noted.

No community is safe, Simmons said. Making meth is easy to do, he added. "They can do it anywhere."

One pound of suspected methamphetamine was seized at the parking lot of the Waverly Motel following a drug bust by the Wright County Drug Task Force May 17.

Two Litchfield residents were charged with first degree possession of methamphetamine following the search of a vehicle belonging to a guest of the Waverly Motel, according to the sheriff's office.

The tip was received earlier in the evening, when someone called in a report of suspicious activity regarding some guests at the motel in unit three, according to the police report.

Information was obtained indicating that at least two of the guests may be illegal aliens, and dealing in large quantities of meth, according to the sheriff's office.

Later in the evening, a deputy observed a vehicle occupied by those matching the description of the tenants from unit three.

The vehicle was stopped as it pulled into the motel. It was driven by Tessa Rhode, 20, of Litchfield, and had an Hispanic male passenger who gave the name of Felipe Solis, 22.

Solis was arrested for failure to possess alien registration card. The ensuing search of the vehicle recovered the suspected meth.

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