Natrona County Judge Details Charges, Sets Bonds For Couple With Rolling Meth Lab
Two Fargo, N.D., residents, whose arrests with a mobile methamphetamine lab caused a shutdown of CY Avenue on Monday, heard the charges against them in Natrona County Circuit Court on Tuesday.
Jason Hays, 37, and Megan Schwabel, 40, each were charged with one felony count of operating a clandestine mobile meth lab in their vehicle and with possession of methamphetamine.
Schwabel also was charged with having no insurance, having no vehicle registration, and having an open container.
Assistant District Attorney Trevor Schenk told Natrona County Circuit Court Judge Michael Patchen that both defendants have extensive criminal records and they have no ties to Casper.
Patchen set Hays' bond at $40,000 and set Schwabel's bond at $80,000.
They will have preliminary hearings in circuit court within a few weeks during which a judge will decide whether they should be bound over to district court for trial.
The case started when Casper Police officers stopped a vehicle with Hays and Schwabel in the 2800 block of CY Avenue at 3:11 a.m. Monday, according to court records.
The vehicle contained methamphetamine and equipment to make the drug, so hazardous materials units from the Casper Fire Department were deployed.
That prompted shutting down the westbound lane of CY Avenue between Fairgrounds Road and Kit Carson Avenue. CY Avenue was reopened at 12:30 p.m. Monday.
The Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation is leading the investigation, and federal resources came from Denver to collect chemicals and hazardous materials.
DCI Commander Matt Waldock said Monday that DCI agents were obtaining search warrants. The regional response team was called after agents came to the same conclusion as police officers: that the stopped vehicle contained a clandestine meth lab, Waldock said. "[The regional response team] helps us as far as the chemical hazards, that type of stuff."
Casper Police Sgt. Joey Wilhelm said Monday there was no threat to public safety in connection with the incident.