Meth lab busted
When probation agents and Waupaca County deputies went to arrest an escaped convict, they found guns and a meth lab.
Jeremy C. Verhagen, 40, Dodge Correctional Institution, is charged with the manufacture of methamphetamine, second-degree reckless endangerment, possession of meth waste, possession of a short-barreled shotgun, and three counts of felon in possession of a firearm.
On Sept. 19, 2016, Verhagen was convicted in Calumet County of possession of methamphetamine and placed on two years of probation.
Conditions of his probation included 60 days in jail to commence in 60 days with work-release privileges.
On Dec. 1. 2016, Verhagen was charged in Calumet County with felony failure to report to jail.
On Jan. 5, 2017, Verhagen was convicted of failure to report to jail and sentenced to 15 days consecutive to the 60-day sentence. He continued to have work-release privileges.
On Jan. 13, Verhagen was charged in Calumet County with criminal escape.
On March 29, 2017, DOC agents, accompanied by Waupaca County deputies, went to Verhagen’s house on Draeger Road in rural Waupaca. They were there to serve a bench warrant and conduct a search.
The DOC agents knocked on the front door, but were unable to make contact.
Deputies noticed two exterior security cameras.
The agents moved to the side of the home and knocked on another door. There they saw an open window.
As Deputy Jon Loken began climbing through the window, Verhagen reportedly walked into the room and yelled, “You can’t do that, it’s illegal.”
According to the criminal complaint, Verhagen attempted to close the window, but Loken and Deputy Pat McClone held it open.
Verhagen began to retreat, but McClone ordered him to stay in the room and then to stand with his back against the far wall.
Loken entered the room. The agents and deputies went back to the front of the house, but the front door had been barricaded. Loken opened the side door to allow them entry into the home.
Officers found a 12-gauge shotgun, a 20-gauge shotgun with a sawed-off barrel, a pump-action 12-gauge shotgun and a .22-caliber revolver.
During the search, DOC Field Supervisor Amanda Ayala opened a small, brown, dorm-style refrigerator. She was immediately overwhelmed by the smell of ammonia.
Ayala backed away from the refrigerator with burning eyes and a burning throat. She was taken to the hospital for treatment.
Officers then kicked the refrigerator door closed.
Outside the house, McClone found an empty box of allergy pills containing psuedoephedrine hydrochloride, a precursor ingredient for making meth.
Officers also seized four other plastic jars containing suspected ingredients and waste products for meth production.
Verhagen was arrested and later transported to Calumet County where his probation was revoked. He was sentenced on May 31 to one year in prison and two years of extended supervision.
If convicted of felony manufacture of methamphetamine, Verhagen could serve up to 12 1/2 years in prison.