Crimetracker: record-setting pace of meth busts in one county

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MORGAN COUNTY, Tenn. (WVLT) - We're tracking crime in Morgan County, where police are busting meth labs at a record-breaking rate.

Since January 1 of this year, the Sheriff's Office has found 19, and that number's not slowing down.

Last year, the Morgan County Sheriff says they busted 34 meth labs.

These are pictures of shake-and-bake labs and the meth-making materials found at homes.

Sheriff Glen Freytag says when he came into office, he wanted to focus on the drug problem because he said more than 90% of all crimes are committed by people who are either high, or stealing to feed their habit.

That's why he hired two full-time narcotics officers. Thefts are down which is good news, but that's not curbing the lucrative drug trade.

"There's quite a bit of money involved in it, and they're finding more wayst to come up with the materials they need to do it with, and it's becoming a prominent problem," said Sheriff Freytag.

Two years ago, state lawmakers passed a law to bring in an electronic tracking system that limits how much pseudoephedrine a person could buy. You have to present your ID when purchasing the drug.

The sheriff says making pseudophedrine available only by prescription drug would go a long way in slowing down meth production.

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