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Meth lab located in wooded area of Nokomis

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Posted: Sunday, April 7, 2013 11:25 am | Updated: 8:01 pm, Tue Apr 9, 2013.

SARASOTA COUNTY - A discarded latex glove and a few feet of police tape Sunday were the only signs left of what authorities say was a meth lab hidden in the woods in Nokomis.

According to a news release, Sarasota County Sheriff's deputies responded around 9:35pm to a report of a possible meth lab on Lucille Avenue off River Boulevard in Nokomis.

During a search of the area deputies came across a homeless man in a tent. While there one deputy found Gatorade bottles in open view that contained materials used to manufacture meth.

Arrested was 32-year-old Shaemus Lonergan, who is homeless. He is charged with Trafficking in Methamphetamine and Unlawful Possession of Listed Chemicals.

The hazardous materials unit was called in to clean up the toxic mess.

"I knew people was back here in the woods camping out, but it didn't strike me that anybody was back there cooking meth," said Chad Earnest, who lives right down the street from where authorities busted the lab late Saturday night.

"I was shocked because my kids are staying around this area," said Jacqui Smith, another neighbor.

Earnest says he's not surprised a meth lab was busted just yards from his home.

"I've been here my whole life, born and raised here and it's just a shame that the neighborhood's come to this," said Earnest.

But this neighborhood isn't unique. Not even three weeks ago, another meth lab was busted elsewhere in Nokomis, sending three suspects to jail.

Earnest says wherever the problem's happening; he hopes authorities can do something about it. "You don't want the kids to get into the drugs, especially meth, it's one thing that's the worst thing around," said Earnest.

There has been no official word on whether and arrest was made. However, witnesses at the scene told ABC 7 News that one man was arrested.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Special Investigations Section at 941-861-4265 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers at 941-366-TIPS.

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