2017-10-12 / News

Township to raze former meth house

BY LANIA ROCHA
810-452-2652 • lrocha@mihomepaper.com

GAINES TOWNSHIP – A house where police discovered a small methamphetamine lab could have a date with a wrecking ball.

The Gaines Township Board of Trustees voted last week to solicit bids for demolishing the house at 12100 Reid Road.

“It’s more than just an eyesore, it’s a health hazard,” said township Trustee Lee Purdy.

The 64-year-old Au Gres woman who owns the property had received multiple citations for code violations but made “no significant progress” in making the house and grounds habitable, according to township attorney Michael Gildner.

In September, District Judge Mark McCabe ruled that the township could “take all action necessary to bring the property into compliance.”

Besides residual toxins from the onepot meth operation that police discovered, the house is in shambles, township officials indicated.

“It’s not fit for human habitation,” said police Chief Mark Schmitzer.

Ceilings and floors have collapsed, the basement is full of water and other problems exist.

“Everything would have to be torn out, including the insulation,” Schmitzer said.

Police raided the house in August 2016. Three children – a newborn boy and two girls, ages 2 and 5 – were taken into state custody, and a man and woman arrested.

Authorities said investigators were able to obtain a search warrant after medical personnel notified them that the baby tested positive for methamphetamine at birth.

The man, now 50, pleaded guilty to single counts of operating a lab in the presence of minors and felony firearms, state records show. He is serving a fourto 20-year sentence.

The 37-year-old woman is serving 30 months to 10 years for single counts of possession of methamphetamine and felony firearms, records show. She pleaded guilty to both charges.

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