In just the past three weeks, the Logan County Sheriff’s Department has made 12 arrests for the theft of anhydrous ammonia from the crop service.
Anhydrous ammonia is one of the key ingredients for making methamphetamine.
The most recent arrest was early Thursday morning.
Roger Scott Bobbett of Morgantown was picked up after the sheriff’s department received a tip from a citizen who noticed a tank leaking at the Schochoh Crop Service and saw a truck leaving the premises.
Deputies were able to find Bobbett and arrested him for the theft of anhydrous ammonia with the intent to manufacture methamphetamine and illegally possessing anhydrous ammonia in an unapproved container.
In addition to the 12 arrests the sheriff's department has made, it has also seized several items used in the thefts including surveillance equipment and night vision scopes/goggles.
The sheriff’s department has been spending extra time keeping a close eye on the crop service because of an increase in methamphetamines and meth related crimes recently.
“A lot of people are doing it for the money,” said Logan County Sheriff’s Department captain Steve Stratton. “With the economy being so bad right now, people are willing to try and spend an hour stealing a tank of anhydrous ammonia that will sell for $4,000.”
Stratton said that some of the people who have been arrested for the thefts aren’t even meth users or manufacturers.
“Some of them are just regular people who say they wouldn’t touch the stuff, but are just doing it for the money,” Stratton said.
Nearly all of those arrested for stealing from the crop service are from outside of Logan County.
“They are finding out about it off the Internet and through word of mouth through the meth cookers,” said Jerry Smith of the South Central Kentucky Drug Task Force. “It’s just a good location for them because it’s in a real rural area, but the sheriff’s department is doing a real good job checking on it and catching the ones stealing it.”
Smith said the drug task force has applied for a federal grant to help pay for additional overtime to help with surveillance of the crop service and similar locations to help stop the manufacturing of methamphetamines.