Clandestine drug lab seized and two men charged in Olla

A raid on a residence at 1508 Front Street in Olla on Monday, February 28, 2011, led to the seizure of an operating clandestine drug lab and the arrest of two Olla men. Jesse Williams, 25, of Olla, was charged with creation of a clandestine lab, possession of CDS II, meth, possession of drug paraphernalia, illegal use of CDS in presence of a minor, manufacture and distribution of CDS II, and resisting an officer, two counts. Jimmie Fletcher, 42, of Olla, was charged with operation of a clandestine lab, possession of CDS II, meth, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of CDS in presence of a minor.

Narcotic agents with the LaSalle Parish Sheriff’s Office received reliable information earlier Monday that a meth lab was being operated at the location, according to Chief of Narcotics Robert Terral. A search warrant was obtained for the residence and officers formed a plan of action for executing the search warrant. Four officers were assigned to enter the residence and four others would provide perimeter security. The officers arrived at the residence about 7:40 p.m. and executed the search warrant. As they entered bedroom in the north end of the residence, they confronted two men identified as Jimmie Fletcher and Jesse Williams. Officers noticed the men were operating an active meth lab. Fletcher immediately complied with the officer’s commands to get down, but Williams ignored the orders and began to fight officers During the struggle, Williams was able to escape through an open window. Once outside the residence, Williams was ordered to stop or a K-9 would be released. Williams kept running and a K-9 was released and caught up with him a short distance from the residence and apprehended him until officers could get him in custody. Meantime, officers advised Fletcher of his Miranda rights and he was escorted from the residence and placed in a patrol unit. Officers returned to the residence to take a closer look at the meth lab and observed the room filled with a gaseous fog or smoke, presumably from the ‘cook’ that was taking place in the drug lab. The lab consisted of some glass jars containing various liquids and a larger glass jar containing the final stage of the ‘cook’ along with two plastic soda bottles with clear hoses protruding from them. Some coffee filers, lantern fuel, lye, and other chemicals were also present. There were several items of drug paraphernalia along with a small bag of suspected methamphetamines on a mirror on the small table near the bed in the room. A razor blade and red drinking straw along with a white powdery residue were present indicating someone had been snorting this suspected drug, officers said. Other items of drug paraphernalia were located throughout the room and after LPSO officers took photographs of the evidence, the Louisiana State Police Hazardous Materials unit was contacted to dispose of the clandestine lab.

Williams was transported to Hardtner Medical Center in Urania for treatment of dog bite wounds and then transported to the LaSalle Parish Jail in Jena. Fletcher was also transported to the LaSalle Parish Jail for booking. LaSalle Parish Sheriff Scott Franklin, who assisted with the raid, commended the quick action of his narcotic officers after learning the meth lab was in operation. “Again, involvement of citizens in providing us information about suspected illegal drug activity, led us to this clandestine lab and the arrest of its operators,” Franklin said. “I commend all the officers involved in this operation and the professional manner in which they conducted themselves,” he said.