An Atwater man is facing felony charges for operating a mobile meth lab driving through Smith Township with two small children inside the vehicle.
Stephen M. Kalcic, 27, of 5309 Waterloo Road, was charged late Monday with second-degree felony charges of illegally manufacturing methamphetamine and two counts of endangering children for a Sebring woman’s two small children inside the vehicle.
The charges carry a maximum 24 years in prison. He is scheduled for an initial appearance Thursday in Mahoning County Sebring Area Court.
Kalcic’s girlfriend, Megan Kiser, 28, of Sebring, was arrested on charges of possessing drug abuse instruments, though formal charges have not been filed. Reports said she owned the car and was a passenger when police stopped the vehicle.
Reports said Kalcic admitted to creating the mobile meth lab and Kiser told police she never would have allowed her small children in the car if she had known Kalcic put the meth lab in the trunk.
Officers spotted Kalcic driving erratically at about 9:15 p.m. Monday on Lake Park Boulevard. Reports said he swerved off the right side of the road several times.
Reports said officers pulled over the car and both Kalcic and Kiser allowed police to search the car. Officers reported they let the two small children remain in the car because of their age.
Officers found a red cut straw with white residue on it that Kiser told police was likely methamphetamine. Officers also found a tinfoil ball with coffee filters inside that contained a gray powdery substance and a hypodermic needle inside an old cigarette pack in the pocket of the passenger side door.
Officers also found a black bag in the trunk. Officers reported they found a large glass or plastic jar inside containing a yellow liquid that produced “a slightly pungent odor,” reports said.
Clear plastic tubing sat on top of the jar officers noted was “consistent with the ‘one-pot method’” of making meth. Officers also found iodine, lye, acid in a shampoo bottle, lithium batteries, tubing, coffee filters, foil and a glass beaker in the bag.
Agents with the federal Drug Enforcement Agency seized the items, photographed and destroyed them, reports said. A crew from Chem-Pack cleaned up the remnants of the lab, reports said.
The children, officers noted, were “highly upset and their stress levels were very elevated due to this trauma” and were released to Kiser’s mother-in-law.
This is not the first time Kalcic has been charged with methamphetamine production. According to the Record-Courier newspaper in Ravenna, Kalcic is on parole after serving three years in prison for a 2010 conviction in Portage County for illegal assembly or possession of chemicals for manufacturing methamphetamine.