Authorities in Giles County are investigating after finding two meth sites, including one near a school.
And one site is so dangerous no one even knows how much it will cost to clean up.
Add to that the timing. In 21 days, law enforcement believes a lot of the money for meth cleanup will be gone, so there is a question about who will then get the bill.
Walter Chavez is now under arrest for allegedly cooking a lot of meth in his rented garage apartment across the street from Minor Hill Elementary School.
"Luckily school was out," said Giles County Sheriff's Deputy Scott Nations. "We are pretty sure this has been going on for a while. He had a child that attended that school, and obviously their safety wasn't his first concern."
Just a few miles away, off a secluded rural road, another renter named Gerald Melton was arrested on a probation violation for cooking meth. But for the first time in this county a meth cook was storing his meth in a well.
"I interviewed the guy, and he said the bottles were gathering up around the house. So he bagged them up and either by himself or with somebody he thought that putting them in the well was a good idea. And it's not," Nations said.
Officials had to carefully remove the bottles from the well one by one without breaking any, using a giant claw similar to what you might use to grab stuffed animals at a carnival.
Nations ended up pulling 20 bottles of meth out of the well, and the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation is now testing the water to see if any of the chemicals have seeped into other wells in the area.
The cleanup from this one site could cost several thousand of dollars.
And, soon, no one knows exactly where that cleanup money is going to come from. Federal grants expire July 1. The belief is that there is enough money left for cleanup, just not as much.
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