Chem. Professor, Students Suspected in Meth Ring

Chem. Professor, Students Suspected in Meth Ring
Posted by FoM on March 04, 2000 at 08:20:23 PT
By Terri Hardy, Bee Staff Writer 
Source: Sacramento Bee
A 62-year-old chemistry instructor at a Redding community college and four students, including her husband, have been arrested in connection with a methamphetamine operation that used chemicals and lab equipment pilferred from the campus, police and school officials said Friday.
The arrest Wednesday of Arline Kel and her husband, Gary Miller, 37, culminated weeks of investigation by a Shasta County drug task force and an internal probe at Shasta Community College. Kel is a respected teacher who has been on campus for 25 years, said Sue Vanderwerf, a Shasta College spokeswoman."This has taken us completely by surprise," Vanderwerf said.Calls to Kel's Redding home were not returned.Although methamphetamine arrests are common in the Northern California area, the editor of Shasta College's student newspaper said allegations of "a drug ring" involving Kel and students had rocked the campus."This is the first real big thing that's ever happened here," said Buddy Fairbanks, the 20-year-old editor of The Lance newspaper.Kel has been placed on paid administrative leave, and investigators are still trying to determine what role she may have had in the operation, Vanderwerf said. Full details of the probe were not available because task force members were "skiing at Mount Shasta," said Jack Nehr, special agent in charge of the region's Bureau of Narcotics Enforcement, which oversees the Shasta County Interagency Narcotics Task Force.A Shasta College narcotics probe began last month after a routine visit to the mobile home of a student who was on probation.The visit uncovered evidence of a working methamphetamine lab and resulted in a task force raid Feb. 17 at the Happy Valley home of Ronald Martin Adkins, 25, and his girlfriend, 24-year-old Leelani Marci English. Both are Shasta College students and student employees working in the science department -- Adkins in the chemistry lab, Vanderwerf said.Officers found an ounce of methamphetamine, as well as explosive chemicals used to manufacture the drug in the couple's enclosed back yard and porch. When their search was almost complete, task force members received a tip that Adkins had another lab nearby, according to a Shasta Interagency Narcotics Task Force news release.At the second Happy Valley residence, officers found 12 large coolers that contained 200 different types of chemicals and a "vast amount of glassware used in chemical synthesis," according to the task force statement.Shasta College's Vanderwerf said the glassware was marked as property of the college's chemistry department. College officials were contacted about the finding and then hired an investigator to conduct an internal probe, Vanderwerf said.Drug agents searched Kel's office and home Wednesday. They found marijuana, methamphetamine pipes, weapons, college lab equipment and chemicals that will be tested for any sign of methamphetamine production, according to the task force and campus officials.That same day, agents found explosives in the home of another couple. Arrested on "possession of explosives maintained in a reckless manner" was Marvin Flatt, 54, and his wife, Catherine Flatt, 52. Catherine Flatt is a student at Shasta College and worked with Adkins in the chemistry lab, campus officials said.Shasta College is preparing disciplinary proceedings for the students involved, Vanderwerf said. New security safeguards are planned, including a key card entry system to equipment areas and fingerprinting and background checks of student employees.Kel and Miller posted bail and were released from the Shasta County jail. Kel was arrested for a number of alleged offenses, including embezzlement, possession of stolen property, possession of more than an ounce of marijuana, possession of methamphetamine pipes, and Fish and Game violations. Agents said more charges could be added as a result of an analysis of chemicals found in her home.Miller was arrested on the same charges, with the exception of embezzlement.Adkins was arrested on several drug charges, including suspicion of manufacturing methamphetamine. He and English were also facing three counts of child endangerment because three children lived in their home, task force officials said.Friday evening, Adkins was still in custody with bail set at $100,000. English had been released on her own recognizance, jail officials said.A sixth person, Adam Terry, 19, was arrested on three misdemeanor warrants. Terry was not a student, officials said, and his involvement was not explained in the task force statements.Published March 4, 2000 Copyright  The Sacramento Bee Related Articles:Report Finds Surge in U.S. Meth Use Threat Growing in Northwest, White House Says Madness Hits Congress
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help

Comment #1 posted by Ellie Payton on January 24, 2001 at 01:14:59 PT:
arline kel's history
To whom it may concern,I used to party with Arline in the late 1980's. This woman was heavily into drugs. She bought large quantities of meth from a dealer named "Dutch" and her ex-husband (Bob)and I spent many a day strung out on meth doing crazy sex scenes with Arline watching and snorting away. This woman thought there was nothing wrong with it. She and other chemistry personnel at Shasta College stole from the stockroom regularly. I know, I worked there and we had Ether parties, chloroform contests, 100% pure alcohol parties, all gratis Shasta College. I dated her son, who was into synthesizing the phentanol analog. Anyone interested in a real exclusive?Ellie Payton (formerly Booth)
[ Post Comment ]

Post Comment

Name: Optional Password: 
Comment: [Please refrain from using profanity in your message]
Link URL: 
Link Title: