An unexpected flat tire led Lebanon police to the discovery of a meth lab in the sheriff’s overflow parking lot Tuesday night.
Chris Luna, a Wilson County meth technician with Lebanon police, said motorcycle Officer Robert Bates stopped to help a woman who had pulled over in the parking lot where the Goodyear tire store once stood at about 7:45 p.m.
“He noticed what appeared to be a one-pot meth lab behind her leg,” Luna said. “This was in a half-gallon jug that was in process.”
Luna said Bates approached the woman and asked her to move away from the truck. That’s when Luna said Bates saw the meth lab, and Luna was called to the scene.
“I verified it was a one-pot and had to burp it to make it safe again,” Luna said.
Police charged Kimberly Irene Vance, 35, of Mt. Juliet, with promotion of methamphetamine manufacture, possession of drugs in a drug-free school zone and driving on a revoked license. Vance was taken to nearby Wilson County Jail and remained Wednesday on $38,000 total bond.
Sheriff Robert Bryan said he was aware of the arrest and thanked the Lebanon officers for their work in processing the scene.
Luna said the meth lab found Tuesday night was the 12th seized so far this year in Wilson County. He said as of Sept. 7, Wilson County was up 400 percent in meth labs found compared to last year, which is the second-highest percent increase in the state for meth labs found.
“We’ve found two meth labs since Sept. 7, so we are probably up 500 percent at this point,” Luna said.