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Palm Coast Meth Lab Busted on Cooper Lane as Sheriff’s Deputies Call in Hazmat Unit

| April 12, 2013

The garage area at 1 Cooper Lane, a mixture of toys and more aged clutter, immediately after authorities left the property Friday afternoon. (c FlaglerLive. Click on the image for larger view.)

The garage area at 1 Cooper Lane, a mixture of toys and more aged clutter, immediately after authorities left the property Friday afternoon. (c FlaglerLive. Click on the image for larger view.)

Last Updated: 6:30 p.m.

Several neighbors knew the house at 1 Cooper Lane in Palm Coast–a pink-painted one-level structure with a fenced-in backyard and an unapologetically trashy front yard, contrasting with the more manicured neighborhood–was not your normal, quiet subdivision house.

Brent Chambers

Brent Chambers

There were numerous fights at night. One of the pregnant occupants’ boyfriends slept in a green pick-up truck outside. There was erratic traffic, in and out, in and out. Four children and five adults lived there, according to neighbors.

“It was not unusual to have them out in the middle of the street screaming at each other,” a retired snowbird and neighbor said, not long after the cops had left this afternoon, as he lounged with his wife by his garage. “In fact one night they got into a fight and that green truck took off.”

The house was the site of a methamphetamine lab, according to police.

The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office Special Investigations Unit called in the St. Johns County Hazmat Unit Friday afternoon to dismantle the lab at 1 Cooper Lane.

Heather Hastey

Heather Hastey

Deputies, according to a sheriff’s release, executed a search warrant on the home around 1 p.m. Five adults and two children, both four years old, were found inside. On the exterior patio, deputies located an active meth lab. Three adults have been charged with manufacturing of methamphetamine, a highly addictive and debilitating substance that has been associated with psychotic episodes in users.

Those charged are: Brent Chambers, 35; Heather Hastey, 42, and Will Hodge, 30. The Florida Department of Children and Families were called out to determine the conditions of the children and whether they will be taken into emergency custody. Two other adults were released from the scene with no charges filed.

The house’s front yard and garage was rimmed with a mixture of young children’s toys and aged clutter, including a row boat.

Traffic in and out of the neighbor on Clubhouse Drive was interrupted until about 4:14 p.m., with only local traffic allowed in, and motorists were asked to avoid that area. But all authorities had left the scene by 4:15.

At the house itself, immediately after authorities left, the green pick-up truck reappeared, as did a white cadillac. The cadillac soon left, after its occupants went in and out of the house. A young man was picking up suitcases and a scooter and placing it in the truck. He was asked about the events that had just taken place there. “I ain’t got a clue, I ain’t sticking around to find out,” he said, before getting into the truck, revving it and taking off.

Commander Jack Bisland of the Sheriff’s Office Investigative Services unit said detectives as well as the Safe Neighborhood Unit have been investigating the home for several weeks.

“We received tips from citizens and we combined that with the information that we had collected. We were able to obtain the search warrant this morning,” Commander Bisland said.

Will Hodge

Will Hodge

He said it appeared that the meth was being used for personal use, but also being manufactured on a small scale for distribution to others. Bisland added that the Palm Coast Fire Department was also assisting at the scene.

Flagler County Sheriff James L. Manfre thanked the community for its help in shutting down the operation.

“Our community, our residents play a vital part in what we are all striving for – a safe community. I wish to thank those who were proactive and reported the suspicious activity,” the Sheriff said.

Chambers, Hastey and Hodge are being booked into the Flagler County Inmate Facility.

For Chambers, it’s the fifth booking at the jail since 2009. His previous bookings have been on probation violation, battery domestic violence, and possession of a controlled substance. Hastey was jailed once before, on 2011, on a controlled substance possession charge. Hodge has been to jail in Flagler County twice before, on a failure to appear charge and a violation of a protective injunction.

Several dogs were also removed from the property. When everyone had gone–cops, hazmat team and pick-up truck driver–only a black cat remained at the scene, its sun-yellow eyes peering through ferns at the quietest scene of the afternoon.

The St. Johns hazmat unit at the scene. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive/contributed)

The St. Johns hazmat unit at the scene. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive/contributed)

Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive/contributed)

Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive/contributed)

Hazmat personnel at work. Click on the image for larger view. (Sheriff's Office)

Hazmat personnel at work. Click on the image for larger view. (Sheriff’s Office)

Click on the image for larger view. (Sheriff's Office)

Click on the image for larger view. (Sheriff’s Office)

The house. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

The house. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

The cat, last thing standing, after the bust at the house. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

The cat, last thing standing, after the bust at the house. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

21 Responses for “Palm Coast Meth Lab Busted on Cooper Lane as Sheriff’s Deputies Call in Hazmat Unit”

  1. confidential says:

    Thank you Sheriff Manfre for the enforcement and Flagler Live for the report!
    We have been enduring the eyesore and multitude of people in and out of that house day and night for few years.
    When I complaint to our city code enforcement of the obvious parking on the grass, allover and on the swells and street overnight they said their hands were tide because was and correctly, the Sheriff Department responsibility as vehicular violation and that was in 2011 and 2012. Regarding the clutter, city of Palm Coast was enforcing over and over again as is so much can be done given the red tape Florida Laws. Now we have a new Sheriff in town and collaboration between city, Sheriff and residents is working like never before. Lets keep cleaning up our city and county. Thanks to all. NOW we have our taxes at work… at least in our Sheriff Dept.

  2. hitekrednek says:

    i pray they recieve the care the addicts need-poor addicts

  3. Ispy says:

    They should have had a Garage sale and made more money then making poisonous drugs around young children. My neighbor up the road says he thinks the house behind him is being used as a grow house. He was over there trying to look in the windows which are covered in blankets. One brand new Escalade rolls in everyday for an hour then leaves. Were going to setup wireless surveillance camera’s on the empty lot next to the house and run our own investigation.

  4. concerned says:

    I wonder just how long this meth lab has ben in operation. Seems like our new Sheriff has done more to save our community since he took office in than our previous Sheriff did throughout his entire term as Flagler County’s “Top Cop”. Way to go Sheriff Manfre!

  5. brewhaha says:

    This might sound stupid but I hope that cat didn’t belong to them–if it did, I hope someone gives him another, better home! Wish I had enough cash-flow to volunteer myself to rescue the little guy :-(

    (I know it could be someone else’s, too–I’m just sayin’)

  6. Deep South says:

    First thing I would do if I lived next door to these folks, is go to there house, knock on their door and tell them to maintain their home and yard, because it brings down the value of the other nice homes in the neighborhood. The second thing, I would tell these folks is to stop this fightin’ and carryin’ on, normal folks don’t behave like this. People just don’t want to do anything about anything, expect peek out there windows and let this stuff happen. Well it aint so, time to get rid of these dope heads, and low life.

    • Anon says:

      Deep South maybe someone did, who knows? It would be nice if it were that simple. I’m afraid this is yet another sign of our times. Once the solution to the real underlying problem is solved, the visible symptoms – cluttered lawn, disarrayed lives, illegal activity, addiction – will cease. There really are people who want and are trying to fix the real problems.

  7. Katie Seamore says:

    Good job!

  8. Dave says:

    Wow, Palm Coast just seems to being going down hill more and more every day, No wonder so many people have left the area.

    • You tell me says:

      School enrollment has declined-are people getting out of town or are kids dropping out of school? Do you think if the special election that’s advertised on this site will cause more of these types of businesses to operate all around palm coast to generate money to pay the rent, taxes, water bills etc.?

    • Stan U Ground says:

      Well once again you can thank the fantastic realtors for screaning there SECTION 8 blood sucking leach tenants ! All 3 Have criminal records including narcotics, Realtors wake up ! all you are doing is driving down property values and Palm Coast Is now a GHETTO !!!!!!

  9. confidential says:

    The female landlord of 1 Cooper Lane that resides on a Marina Condominium waterfront in Jupiter Florida should be liable to pay for the obvious significant cost to the taxpayer, of this search warrant cost ; our Sheriff Department personnel and any other agencies involved, The costly Hazmat personnel and equipment, the service of our Palm Coast Fire Department personnel and equipment cost as well. Collect the funds by putting a lien on her property. Maybe then this lady landlord will properly screen her renters and abide by city ordinances. Enough years that we had to endure the eyesore and criminal activities in her house.

    • Karma says:

      The landlord was Heather’s Mother… And I agree. This story makes me sick to my stomach. I have seen those parents go down hill for years-progressively getting worse. My heart breaks for those children and animals. Truly makes me sick.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Good job! One question, why did it take so long?

    Keep the ball rolling, there is plenty more out there that needs to be addressed.

  11. Annoyed says:

    Who cares about the cat? It can take care of itself, unlike the small children who will have flashes of the raid run through their heads for the rest of their lives because of the poor decisions their parents made. What kind of life are they gonna have now? The sibling will probably end up in foster care and/or be separated. Not to mention they will probably never see their parents again. And what if there’s more to the story than they tell you? We’re all so quick to jump to conclusions and judge each other

  12. Karma says:

    I’m sorry “Annoyed” but what else could there be to the story? What could possibly be worse? They had a meth lab in their home-where small children are. And animals… It all matters and it’s all so sad. Shame on them!

  13. sly fox says:

    hope these people get the help they desperately need to stop this insane addiction. Or they’ll be out on the street again, mom will get her another house and the cycle continues. Kudos to the police dept., Wonder why Code wasn’t called if the yard was such a mess? We have a beautiful yard, trees flowering plants, but got cited because we had bricks on our side yard (we where painting them to use in our landscape ) & the citation sounded like we lived in a trash dump

  14. ryan says:

    I know, sly fox. Seems like Code Enforcement is too busy cracking down on people trying to have yard sales more than 2 times per year, while they leave trash on the side of the road that never gets picked up.
    As for the element of people living around the Clubhouse Dr. area, a weirdo moved in next door to me who won’t even give me a first name, and a neighbor across the way from me, who is a decent man, unfortunately continues to blame everyone else for his criminal burglar son, who continues to steal from people around the neighborhood and break into cars. I care more about issues like that than who cuts their grass. Safety in the neighborhood and protecting our children from predators is the number one priority.

  15. someone says:

    Everyone makes mistakes, no one is perfect but sitting here bashing them doesn’t make you any better,
    Do yall ever think that Heather didn’t know anything ? They care for their children and love them, yeah what happen here wasn’t right but the are gonna get the help they need.
    & yes it is Heather mom’s house but doesn’t mean she bas a right to pay for stuff if she knew nothing about bmp it, yall don’t need to say anything if yall know nothing about it

    • A.S.F. says:

      Dear “someone”–If you know Heather personally and/or care about her at all, don’t make excuses for her or blame other people for being concerned. Help Heather (and her family) by encouraging her to enter long-term intensive treatment for her addiction and any other problems she might have that are associated with it. She needs to take responsibility, if not for herself, then for her children–They are the truly innocent victims here.. If she refuses to take responsibility, authorities will have no other option then to step in. And, by the way, if you happen to live anywhere near where she resides, you better hope that her house doesn’t literally blow up and take you or your’s along with it. It’s been known to happen in cases of Meth manufacture.

  16. hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm says:

    innocent until proven guilty

    how is the cat’s current condition??? ;)

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