I-TEAM: Hidden Hazards

Christian County – Meth is a growing problem in Central Illinois, as local police are making more arrests, and are requiring the help of county and state law enforcement.

Authorities say an increase in methamphetamine and heroin use is being seen across the county, and that meth use is especially a large problem in Illinois.

“We have a drug problem.  Drug addicts will use whatever they can get their hand on,” says Christian Country Sherriff Bruce Kettlekamp

Christian County detectives say homes that housed meth labs can be found where you don't expect them, like near schools and churches.  WAND News went to some of these properties, now family homes, where some owners were unaware of previous meth activities in their homes, as well as the possible health problems that could result from meth-making chemicals seeping into carpets and walls.

WAND News also spoke with Detective Evert Nation, who says he busted several meth labs inside homes in Taylorville.  Nation also says the “shake and bake” method of producing meth is starting to become more popular.  Those who wish to make meth with this method take household items and combine them in a container by shaking it.  The resulting chemical reaction can cause the material to reach temperatures in excess of 1400 degrees.

The side effects of meth use are telling, with many have sores across their faces from scratching.  Police also say the clean-up of meth homes are costly.  However, State Police take care of those costs. 

Sheriff  Kettlekamp says he believes most potential homeowners must be notified about the existence of meth labs inside Christian County homes before those homes are sold.

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