ALTON -- The Oregon County Sheriff's Department warns area residents who might be considering purchasing items to manufacture methamphetamine that it would not be in their best interest to do so locally.
Three Alton residents found this out last week when they entered an Alton convenience store and bought suspicious items, all used in the making of the illegal drug.
Oregon County Sheriff Tim Ward said it just happened that an unidentified off-duty law enforcement officer became thirsty for a soda at the same time the three were buying their meth cooking ingredients.
He contacted the sheriff's office and an investigation and search of the car leaving the store led to three arrests.
Ward said James H. Carroll, 52, of Alton was charged with the class C felony of possessing chemicals with the intent to manufacture methamphetamine. Bessie "Janie Lou" Morris, 58, and Guy Varnell, 39, both of Alton, were both charged with the same class C felony and taken to Oregon County jail. All three posted a $10,000 bond and will be arraigned at a later date.
In other law enforcement action, two men were taken to the Missouri Department of Corrections March 18 by officers with the Oregon County Sheriff's Department. William B. Ruminer, 23, of Poplar Bluff received three years in prison on a probation violation. His original charge was forgery.
Douglas Ray, 23, received five years also on a probation violation.
Ray's original charge was driving three times without a license in Oregon County. He was also charged with knowingly burning Ripley County.