Police: Suspect broke back while fleeing meth bust

BEVERLY – A Walker, W.Va., man fractured his back after leaping nearly 20 feet in an attempt to elude authorities during the investigation of a methamphetamine operation in the Beverly area Sunday.

Sean Yoho, 39, was hospitalized after he made the jump from a second-story porch at the 570 Albright Road residence of 51-year-old Donna Glendenning where Major Crimes Task Force agents had allegedly located a red phosphorus methamphetamine manufacturing operation Sunday evening.

“He heard the agents coming and ran out the back door, then jumped off a deck that was between 15 and 20 feet off the ground,” Washington County Sheriff Larry Mincks said Monday.

Yoho was taken to Marietta Memorial Hospital where he remained Monday and is scheduled to undergo back surgery.

Glendenning and 29-year-old Dirk Filon of 120 Wells Ave., Marietta were placed in the Washington County Jail after agents executed a search warrant and found the meth lab at the Beverly residence Sunday, officials said.

Charged with illegal manufacturing of methamphetamine, a second-degree felony, bond was set at $35,000 each for Glendenning and Filon during a hearing Monday in Marietta Municipal Court.

“The same charge is pending against Yoho until after he’s released from the hospital,” Mincks said. “He will likely be indicted at a later date.”

The sheriff said Major Crimes Task Force agents had received information that Yoho was at the Glendenning residence and possibly manufacturing methamphetamine. He said Yoho is a known meth manufacturer who was previously arrested in July of this year by the Parkersburg Narcotics Task Force.

At the residence Sunday the Major Crimes Task Force agents found numerous items used in the red phosphorus method of manufacturing meth, Mincks reported. He said those items included empty pseudoephedrine packs, red phosphorus, iodine and coffee filters.

The agents observed a methamphetamine “cook” was in progress and seized a quantity of the substance.

“This was a pretty large operation,” Mincks said. “About 8 pounds of meth was seized, some still in liquid form. It was one of the largest labs we’ve seen in this area.”

He said all three suspects admitted being involved in the meth manufacturing process. Filon and Glendenning said they provided money for Yoho to buy the chemicals. Yoho admitted he was the “cook” for the meth and Filon and Glendenning assisted in the process, Mincks said.

Mincks said because the meth had been manufactured using the red phosphorus method a special crew, certified by the Environmental Protection Agency to handle the material, had to be brought in to clean up the lab site.

“Since they used the red phosphorus method we had to call BCI (Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation), and they contacted the Drug Enforcement Administration who sent an EPA-certified team from Knox County to do the cleanup,” he said.

Mincks said deputies monitored the Glendenning residence overnight until the meth cleanup crew arrived Monday morning.

He said such cleanup operations can cost between $2,500 and $10,000, but he expected the bill for the Monday cleanup would be covered by the DEA.

The specialized cleanup is required due to the volatility of the red phosphorus methamphetamine chemical process. Mincks said there have been cases in other areas of the state where officers have opened one of the chemical containers and accidentally breathed in the fumes which have a paralyzing effect on the lungs.

“Some officers have had to go on disability after breathing the fumes,” he said.

Mincks said the cleanup at Glendenning’s residence was completed Monday, and the area is no longer hazardous to anyone entering the home. The residence is in a remote area and the meth lab did not pose a threat to others, he said.