published Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

Three women arrested on meth charges in DeKalb County, Ala.

Three women were nabbed in separate methamphetamine raids Sunday in DeKalb County, Ala., after local residents complained of chemical odors.

Authorities say citizen complaints are one reason for the high number of drug busts this year, and they hope it continues.

"We get complaints, and we go check it," said DeKalb County Chief Deputy Mike Edmondson. "We've got dope just about everywhere."

On Sunday, the sheriff's office and drug task force were called to a trailer in the Whitton community on the south end of the county after an odor complaint.

Investigators found a white bag with products from a meth lab inside and then began to search the house, Sheriff Jimmy Harris said in a news release. They found three pot meth labs inside the trailer and then discovered a Dumpster on the property with seven meth labs inside.

The resident of the trailer, Amy Shanefelt, 33, was arrested along with Mary Waller, 43. Both women were charged with manufacture of a controlled substance second degree, possession of a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia.

Neither Shanefelt nor Waller has a previous record in the county, Edmondson said.

On the same day, a deputy went to a house on state Highway 176 on Lookout Mountain to serve a felony warrant and noticed a chemical smell inside.

Officers found marijuana, meth, a glass pipe, a syringe and other objects and arrested Joni Alajean Posey, 34, Harris said. She was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia, manufacture of a controlled substance second degree, possession of a controlled substance and possession of marijuana second degree.

about Joy Lukachick Smith...

Joy Lukachick Smith is the city government reporter for the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Since 2009, she's covered crime and court systems in North Georgia and rural Tennessee, landed an exclusive in-prison interview with a former cop convicted of killing his wife, exposed impropriety in an FBI-led, child-sex online sting and exposed corruption in government agencies. Earlier this year, Smith won the Malcolm Law Memorial Award for Investigative Reporting. She also won first place in ...

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