A meth bust in Hockley County lands one man behind bars, and has investigators looking for more.
Meanwhile, state authorities say meth labs are a growing concern. Hockley County Sheriff David Kinney says state authorities put his office on alert for meth labs.
"They said that they thought they were coming back. I don't know why they are coming back or what the deal is, but he asked us to start watching for it. Sure enough we had one going," Sheriff Kinney said.
A tip early last week led investigators to a garage at 401 N. College in Levelland. After some surveillance, a state district judge signed off on a warrant, and Wednesday night authorities went in.
Investigators say the main door into the building would be tightly bolted and hard to get in, so they decided to go through one of the four large garage doors. The sheriff's office borrowed an end loader and used it to quickly force the garage door open then run inside.
"All together, it took about 30 second from the time the front end of the loader started to scoop up the door, until they had the guy on the floor in there," Kinney said.
Rodney Mulkey, 47, is now behind bars at the Hockley County Jail, and investigators say more could follow.
"We've got a couple of other people involved that we're still looking at," Kinney said.
Kinney tells NewsChannel 11 his office has only uncovered two labs in the past two years, but the location of this latest bust has him concerned.
"To me it's really serious. These guys set up a meth lab inside a residential area. It's a block or half a block away from a daycare center. It's very dangerous; these chemicals, they are very volatile. We're not going to put up with it any longer. I mean, if we get anything and with think they're doing it, we're going to knock them down," Kinney said.
Kinney asks anyone who sees suspicious activity, or suspects someone is making or dealing drugs in their area, to call local law enforcement.
"Especially, if you think it's a drug lab, I mean those things could hurt you or your family or anybody else. We don't want that happening at all," Kinney said.
In 2005, Texas restricted the purchase of pseudoephedrine, a main ingredient in meth production. The DEA says those laws have dramatically reduced the number of labs.
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