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Another arrest made in connection with Iowa meth-making operation


This news story was published on February 7, 2012.
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John Mangalonzo, The Hawk Eye, Burlington, Iowa –

KEOKUK – An investigation into an elaborate meth-cooking operation in a home that netted five people the past few days has resulted in yet another arrest of a local resident.

Lindsay Leeann Riddle, 26, was booked into the Lee County jail Saturday charged with conspiracy to manufacture of more than five grams of meth within 1,000 feet of a city park and in the presence of a minor.

If convicted of the offense, Riddle could be sentenced up to 35 years in prison.

Five other people, Duke Kevin Crowell, 47, Kathy Sue Crowell, 56, Shawn Michael Stark, 25, Christen Mitchell Stark, 26, and Chad Lawrence Stark, 21, were arrested last week in connection with the case.

Each also is charged with conspiracy to manufacture more than five grams of meth.

The offense also noted the alleged manufacturing operation was done within 1,000 feet of a city park and in the presence of a minor, which could add more prison time upon conviction.

The five were charged with maintaining a drug house. Authorities lodged a child endangerment offense on Shawn Stark.

The arrests stemmed from an intensive investigation conducted by the Lee County Narcotics Task Force into allegations the group had been cooking meth inside a home at 1813 Bank St., Crowell’s and Riddle’s listed address.

Stacy Weber, commander of the task force, said agents executed a search warrant where items indicative of the “shake and bake” meth production were found and seized

Two children were located inside the home during the search.

One-pot, also known as the shake-and-bake method, means cooks can make meth in one sealed container that generally is flipped upside-down to cause the reaction needed to turn several toxic ingredients into meth.

The chemical reaction inside the container, which can be anything from a Coleman fuel can to a soda bottle, causes an extremely high amount of pressure to build up after being shaken. It can create a significant explosion, authorities said.

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