An alleged meth lab in operation at 343 South Webber Drive in the Village of Chittenango was shut down by law enforcement last night. (photo courtesy Madison County Sheriff's Office)
Madison County Sheriff’s Narcotics Investigators shut down an operating meth lab late last night, Aug. 15, in the Village of Chittenango as a result of information obtained during an earlier vehicle and traffic stop nearby.
Madison County Undersheriff John Ball said that information was obtained regarding a meth lab in operation at 343 South Webber Drive in the Village of Chittenango. Investigators set up visual observation and determined that the lab was in fact in operation.
According to police, as investigators approached, the suspect, Vincent S. Bort, 26, of Chittenango, attempted to dump the contents of a one-pot device and flee. In the process, he threw the bottle in the direction of an undercover deputy, exposing him to the caustic chemical combination involved in the one-pot manufacturing process.
Bort continued to flee but was quickly taken into custody several feet away.
The injured deputy was assigned to the Drug Enforcement Administration – Syracuse Resident Office Task Force, and was from the Oneida County Sheriff’s Office, working with deputies from the Madison County Sheriff’s Office, also assigned to the task force.
The deputy was transported to Upstate Hospital in Syracuse by Fayetteville Ambulance after being decontaminated on the scene. The injuries are not considered to be life threatening, but are considered serious. Bort was also transported to Upstate Hospital for evaluation due to exposure to the chemicals.
A residence adjacent to the lab location was asked to evacuate the home as a precautionary measure due to the active nature of the lab and the close proximity to the dwelling. The other adjacent residence was asked to shelter in place until the scene was secure.
Bort has been charged with six crimes:
•Criminal Possession of a controlled substance in the second degree (A2 felony).
•Unlawful manufacture of methamphetamine in the second degree – prior conviction in five years (C felony).
•Assaulting a police officer (C felony).
•Crim possession of methamphetamine manufacturing materials (A misdemeanor).
•Resisting arrest (A misdemeanor).
•Criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree (A misdemeanor).
Also arrested was Samantha F. Wheeler, 32, of Chittenango. Wheeler was charged with one count of criminal possession of a controlled substance seventh degree, a class A misdemeanor.
In total, approximately 3 ounces, or 84 grams, of meth was seized, with an approximate street value of over $8,400. The scene was processed by CCERT, sheriff’s investigators and deputies, and sheriff’s evidence technicians.
Bort was arraigned Wednesday morning, Aug. 16, in the Village of Chittenango Court before the Hon. Michael St. Ledger and remanded to the Madison County Jail on no bail/bond.
Wheeler was processed and released on an appearance ticket and will answer charges in Chittenango Court at a later date.
“The inherent risk involved in shutting down these meth labs is more than can be described,” Ball said. “Each time these operations are executed, an immense risk to the safety of our officers, firefighters and EMS personnel is imminent — and, as we saw last night, can lead to injuries of first responders at any moment. Our wishes for a speedy recovery are with the deputy that was injured last night.”
This investigation is continuing and additional charges may be forthcoming.
Assistance at the scene was provided by the New York State Police Contaminated Crime Scene Emergency Response Team, Chittenango Fire Department, Fayetteville Fire Department, Chittenango Police Department, Fayetteville Ambulance and AMR Ambulance.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican and Eagle Bulletin newspapers.
Nov 18, 2017
Nov 18, 2017
Nov 18, 2017