Meth busts up in Garfield County |

Meth busts up in Garfield County

Ryan Graff

GARFIELD COUNTY – The number of methamphetamine cases a drug enforcement squad has handled in neighboring Garfield county rose from five in 2001 to 50 in 2003. During the same time period, the number of cocaine cases the organization handled grew from 21 in 2001 to 51 in 2003, law enforcement officials say. The number of methamphetamine cases surpassed the number of cocaine cases last year for the first time, with 12 methamphetamine cases and four cocaine cases, say agents with the Two Rivers Drug Enforcement Team. “We are seeing more of it,” Garfield County Sheriff Lou Vallario said. The Colorado Regional Community Policing Institute will teach classes next week from Parachute to Carbondale to inform residents about methamphetamine trafficking. The seminars will focus on teaching citizens what methamphetamine is, the effect it has on communities, and what to do if they find it, said Vallario. Vallario said he took the course his office is now sponsoring. “When I saw it, I was overwhelmed by a lot of it,” he said. “The effects on the kids is really what motivated me.”Kids born on methamphetamine tend to have lasting medical problems, Vallario said. Kids are often exposed to toxins in homes where methamphetamine is being produced, or “cooked,” he added. Vallario recalled one story from the seminar he attended about child mistaking Coleman fuel, which is sometimes used to cook methamphetamine, for Gatorade because it was in a Gatorade container in the refrigerator. The child drank the fuel and died three days later, said Vallario. “This is nasty stuff,” he said. “Everybody needs to get together and get it out of our community.”Vail, Colorado

Support Local Journalism