On April 22, Maricopa County Sheriff's deputies went to the Sun City home of Lancelot Lipe after receiving anonymous calls about a fire burning at his place.
According to court documents obtained by New Times, Lipe, 29, didn't want the cops there, as he gave deputies a good ol' "fuck you" when they asked for ID, slammed a deputy's foot in the door, and refused to help put out the fire before the deputies left because of "availability of resources."
The Sheriff's Office found out a week later why it all happened -- Lipe allegedly was running a meth lab in the house, which also was home to his wife and three kids.
The Sheriff's Office apparently had a good enough "availability of resources" Monday, when deputies went to arrest Lipe on a charge of assaulting a police officer and made a rare sighting for Sun City: a meth lab, according to the court documents.
When detectives entered the house, they were "overwhelmed by a strong chemical odor . . . that immediately caused a burning sensation to both the eyes and throat[,] which caused detectives to immediately leave the area for health and safety reasons," according to the court documents.
Turns out, according to a statement by another deputy, the room that the three youngsters lived in was "very close" to where the meth kitchen was found.
Naturally, deputies asked Lipe what was up with the whole meth-lab-in-the-garage thing.
According to the court documents, Lipe said it was his friend's. Lipe told police his friend owed him $2,500, so he let him play meth chef in his garage.
Among the items found in the house were a glass cooking vessel, jugs of acid, other chemicals for meth cookery, as well as meth pipes, other drug paraphernalia, and, of course, meth itself, according to the documents.
Lipe allegedly told police his meth-cooking friend had been over at 6 a.m. on Monday to work on meth-making, and the kiddos didn't leave the house with their mother until 10 a.m. Thus, investigators believe it's possible the youngsters could have been exposed to meth-cooking fumes for four hours Monday.
Lipe's wife, Brenda Lipe, came home with the kids as deputies dealt with the meth situation at the house.
More meth and a meth pipe were found in Brenda Lipe's truck, but she told police she hadn't used any drugs for a "very long time," according to the documents. In a later interview with a child crimes detective, the Sheriff's Office discovered a "very long time" actually meant she had smoked meth earlier that day, according to the documents.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
Brenda Lipe was booked into jail on three counts of child abuse, and one count each of dangerous drug possession and a dangerous-drug violation charge.
Her husband, on the other hand -- who has prior convictions for forgery, armed robbery, and possession of a weapon by a prohibited person -- faces a few more charges.
Lancelot Lipe is facing charges of aggravated assault on a police officer, obstructing government operations, disobeying a fire control order, obstruction, possessing dangerous drug equipment for manufacturing,. dangerous drug possession, drug paraphernalia possession, and child abuse.
The children, as you can imagine, were taken by Child Protective Services.