published Tuesday, November 26th, 2013

Nine officers injured in Estill Springs meth fire

A meth lab fire Sunday night in Franklin County injured nine officers who answered a domestic violence call in Estill Springs.

A woman called authorities around 8:30 p.m. CST from the All Seasons Campground in Estill Springs, Tenn., where she said Sherman Hargrove, of Decherd Estill Road Lot #13, Winchester, Tenn., had been assaulting her all day and that he had a methamphetamine lab and chemicals for production of the clandestine drug, according to Franklin County Sheriff's Office spokesman Sgt. Chris Guess.

The woman said Hargrove had “threatened harm to anyone who came to the residence to confront him,” Guess said in a release.

Franklin County deputies were assisting Estill Springs Police and had set up a perimeter around a trailer at the campground and tried to make contact with Hargrove. Failing that, officers tried to get through the door, Guess said.

“Mr. Hargrove then appeared at front door and initiated a fire,” Guess said. “”Law enforcement officers then attempted to remove all dangerous and flammable chemicals from the residence to prevent an acceleration of fire or explosion.”

Hargrove retreated to the bedroom of the trailer and tried to get out a window where he was captured by deputies.

While Estill Springs firefighters put out the fire, nine officers were taken to Southern Tennessee Medical Center for treatment of exposure to chemical fumes and contaminated air, according to officials.

All the officers were treated and released “with some follow up treatment and medical procedures expected,” Guess said.

Hargrove was charged with nine counts of aggravated assault, domestic violence assault and resisting arrest. He is being held on $250,000 bond and faces a court date on Jan. 9.

about Ben Benton...

Ben Benton is a news reporter at the Chattanooga Times Free Press. He covers Southeast Tennessee and previously covered North Georgia education. Ben has worked at the Times Free Press since November 2005, first covering Bledsoe and Sequatchie counties and later adding Marion, Grundy and other counties in the northern and western edges of the region to his coverage. He was born and raised in Cleveland, Tenn., a graduate of Bradley Central High School. Benton ...

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