St. George couple faces illegal meth lab charges

Robert R. Russell Jr.
Robert R. Russell Jr.
Deanna M. Russell
Deanna M. Russell


ST. GEORGE – A husband and wife are facing state charges of manufacturing methamphetamines following a raid at their Birch Road home in St. George by state, federal and local authorities, Vermont State Police said.

Robert R. Russell Jr. and Deanna M. Russell, both 46, are due in Vermont Superior Court on Nov. 12, police said. The drug is a highly addictive stimulant that can be explosive when improperly manufactured, officials said.

Lt. Robert Lucas, station commander at the Williston barracks, said troopers received a tip from a concerned resident about the possible unlawful manufacturing of a controlled substance at the residence at 89 Birch Road.

Detective Sergeant Matthew Hill, who is assigned to the Fire & Explosion Investigation Unit, uncovered enough evidence to obtain a search warrant for the residence that was executed on Friday and Saturday. The site is off Vermont 2A near the town clerk’s office.

Initial entry was made into the trailer Friday night and after a quick review of the evidence, authorities agreed that a full search should wait until Saturday. State police were left to guard the scene throughout the night.

The Vermont State Police Clandestine Laboratory Enforcement Team received help during the investigation from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, Hinesburg Volunteer Fire Department, St. Michael’s College Rescue, Vermont HazMat office and the Vermont National Guard 15th Civil Support Team.

The major players involved in the raid met at the state police barracks in Williston at 8 a.m. Saturday and eventually arrived at the residence about 9 a.m. They remained at the scene until about 4:30 p.m.

Hinesburg Fire Chief Al Barber said about a half dozen volunteer firefighters and one truck was asked to stand by at the scene in case of any problems.

The residence was safely cleared of hazardous materials that were disposed of in accordance with established guidelines and procedures, Hill said.

The Russells were arrested on Sunday, Oct. 5,  and processed for suspicion of manufacturing methamphetamines before being released, police said.

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