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Detectives raid drug lab at recently vacated home in Dunsmuir

The Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office called in help from Butte County due to the 'volatile nature' of the drug lab and chemicals.

Posted: Feb 5, 2020 11:06 AM

DUNSMUIR, Calif. — Detectives raided an apparent drug lab operation at a recently vacated home in Dunsmuir on Monday, according to the Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies responded to the 4100-block of Walnut Street that afternoon after a call reporting a possible drug lab inside. A detective and veteran of the Siskiyou Unified Major Investigation Team (SUMIT) reportedly found evidence of butane honey oil (BHO) within — a highly concentrated form of cannabis resin, used in "dabbing."

"Also recovered were components of another drug lab, possibly for methamphetamine or an unidentified designer-type drug," the Sheriff's Office said.

The responding officers also found marijuana "shake," the loose cannabis leaves and stems often used to create BHO using a solvent like butane. Quantities of that gas were also discovered at the scene.

The Sheriff's Office said that it called in help from the Butte County Sheriff's Office "due to the volatile nature of the drug lab components and the dangerous chemicals involved." Illegal BHO labs have a documented history of causing the occasional fiery explosion.

Members of the Butte Interagency Narcotic Task Force, trained in the safe dismantling and seizure of drug labs, soon arrived at the scene. The Sheriff's Office said that chemicals and lab components were seized as evidence to be analyzed by the California Department of Justice's Bureau of Forensic Science.

The original call about the house was relayed in by a city official and the property owner, the Sheriff's Office said, and the home had recently been vacated by an unidentified tenant. Authorities did not name a suspect in the case.

"This incident illustrates the fact an illegal drug lab operation can be conducted in any neighborhood in virtually any type of residential dwelling. We are grateful a citizen and city official promptly contacted us to report the suspicious components, chemicals, and other items at the scene," said Sheriff Jon Lopey. "This incident ended safety because two good citizens saw something suspicious and reported their concerns to law enforcement."

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