Eugene Thompson Jr. is charged with operating a clandestine laboratory

A Marydel man was arrested Thursday morning after police found a portable methamphetamine manufacturing setup inside his car.

Dover Police Department spokesman Master Cpl. Mark Hoffman said the incident began at about 8:26 a.m. May 30 in the parking lot of the Walgreen’s pharmacy at 1001 Forrest Ave.

Police arrived after a third party called to report a possible overdose/medical issue involving a man in a blue sedan. Looking inside, they found 59-year-old Eugene Thompson Jr., extricated him from the vehicle and took him to the hospital for treatment.

While helping Thompson, police found a “one-pot” meth laboratory inside the car, with a second being found shortly afterward in the car trunk. Police also found three vials totaling 0.6 grams of methamphetamine inside the vehicle.

Police say a “one-pot” meth lab is a simple way of manufacturing the illegal drug, where all the necessary ingredients are mixed in a plastic soda bottle. However, the chemical reaction sometimes can cause the bottle to unexpectedly explode, spraying the chemicals around the area. This can cause third-degree burns or death if the exposure is great enough.

Emergency response and hazardous material teams from several agencies went to the location and safely disposed of the labs, causing the parking lot to the business to be closed for about three hours, Hoffman said.

Once Thompson was released from the hospital, he was charged with operating a clandestine laboratory, possession of methamphetamine and possession of drug paraphernalia.

He was released from custody on his own recognizance.