Charges against one of two men charged in connection with an alleged rolling methamphetamine lab have been dismissed.
Timothy R. French, 37, of Greencastle was set to face a jury on March 11 on a charge of Class B felony dealing in methamphetamine. Late last week, the charge was dismissed without prejudice, which means the prosecutor reserves the right to re-file should additional evidence against French arise in the future.
The other man who was arrested, 28-year-old Chad Buttery, is set to go to trial today. He is charged with Class B felony dealing in methamphetamine, and could be sentenced to up to 20 years in prison.
Buttery's charges were enhanced because he allegedly committed the crimes he is accused of within 1,000 feet of a school, court documents said.
According to a probable cause affidavit prepared by Greencastle Police Department Officer Chris Helmer, a vehicle Buttery was driving on Oct. 3 was for an equipment violation (a non-working license plate light). Court documents said that stop yielded the discovery that Buttery was in possession of meth precursors used in meth production, and that "further investigation led to the discovery of fleeing suspects and live marijuana growth in a nearby residence."
When Helmer stopped the car, Buttery and another male subject, later identified as Timothy French, 34, took off on foot, court documents said. Helmer lost both men, but returned to the still-running vehicle, where he discovered what he believed to be the components of a rolling meth lab.
Putnam County Prosecutor Tim Bookwalter said charges against French were dropped because it was discovered that he was not the passenger in Buttery's vehicle. Bookwalter said the identity of the passenger is known, and that charges will likely be filed.
French does have charges of Class D felony criminal confinement and Class A misdemeanor domestic battery and interference with the reporting of a crime pending against him. He is set to go to trial on those charges on March 11.