06/17/13 David E. Howe, 44, of Argos, was sentenced last week in Marshall Superior Court 1 to ten years imprisonment for manufacturing methamphetamine, a Class B felony. In open court, Howe admitted he manufactured methamphetamine in January and February, 2013 in his home located on Hickory Road outside of Argos.
Judge Robert O. Bowen approved an agreement reached between Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Nelson Chipman and defense attorney Joseph R. Morris, which provided for a sentence at the Indiana Department of Corrections of 10 years of imprisonment. Based upon a prior clean record, an exemplary community life before getting involved with methamphetamine, his willingness to take immediate responsibility for his actions and his obvious remorse, four years of the sentence was suspended, leaving six years to serve. In addition, the State agreed, and Judge Bowen approved for Mr. Howe to be subject to purposeful incarceration which gives him priority entry into intensive drug treatment while incarcerated and, if successfully completed, makes him eligible to petition the court for modification of his sentence.
The case began when an informant was able to video the manufacturing process underway in Howe’s home. In addition, methamphetamine trash was located near the home with indications it had come from Howe’s residence. In late January, a traffic stop of Howe resulted in one passenger being arrested for possession of methamphetamine and a second passenger taking flight on foot but subsequently being stopped with a taser and arrested for resisting law enforcement. At that time, Howe was allowed to leave.
Calls to the drug hotline confirmed manufacturing activities were occurring at the Hickory Road address. Further investigation revealed Howe’s deepening habit of purchasing pseudoephedrine, an essential ingredient of methamphetamine, from numerous local drug stores. All of this led to the approval of a search warrant that was executed on February 11, 2013 that obtained numerous ingredients used in the manufacturing process, including completed product and some in the process of completion.
Chipman stated, “This is a sad example of how meth can take a virtual pillar of the community, and turn an exemplary life upside down. Through the turmoil in his life that from all indications started in July of 2012 and ended with Mr. Howe’s arrest in February of this year, the strength and character of his family remains. They are to be commended. Mr. Howe has a great deal to look forward to.”
Chipman added, “ It was the excellent investigative work of the Marshall County Undercover Narcotics Investigation Team, together with cooperative efforts of County Officers Jeff Sharp, Jonathon Bryant, Ryan Hollopeter, Robert Hafke and Neal Wallace that brought an abrupt end to a young, but growing manufacturing operation.”