Search exposes meth operation

Published 9:22 am Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A Lyle man who was charged for possessing methamphetamine manufacturing ingredients has entered into a plea agreement that allows for dismissal of the charge.

Jacob Harm Wilde, 33, now only faces fifth-degree drug possession charges, to which he pleaded guilty. He is scheduled to be sentenced May 13 in the case.

According to court documents, a search warrant was executed at the residence of Bryan Douglas Battin, 45, of Austin, who has also been charged with two felony drug crimes in the matter.

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When police searched Battin’s home, they found hypodermic needles, several spoons and containers with drug residue on them, a marijuana grinder, cut straws and pen tubes, 17 grams of marijuana, 0.5 grams of meth and meth pipes. The court complaint states police also found meth manufacturing items like drain cleaner, aluminum foil, plastic tubing, coffee filters, Sudafed packages, disassembled lithium batteries and hand tools.

Wilde, who had active warrants for his arrest, was sleeping on the couch at the time of the search warrant. When he was questioned by law enforcement, Wilde admitted that he is an intravenous user and manufacturer of meth. He said all manufacturing supplies in Battin’s home belonged to him and that he “cooks” meth for his own use but does not sell it.

Battin told police he was unaware of the manufacturing supplies, but said Wilde “cooks” meth and probably brought the items to his house.

Wilde was charged with fifth-degree drug possession and possessing methamphetamine precursors with intent to manufacture. Battin was charged with third-degree narcotics sales and fifth-degree drug possession; he pleaded not guilty to both. Battin’s jury trial begins June 20.