Two people are facing multiple charges, including child endangerment and possession of methamphetamine, after they tried to flee a traffic checkpoint this weekend.
Michael Lee Harrelson, 33, of Plantation Road in Hephzibah, Ga., was charged with two counts of drugs and unlawful manufacture of methamphetamine, two counts of child endangerment, reckless driving, operating an uninsured vehicle and no South Carolina driver’s license.
Laure Marie McKee, 27, of Cato Road in Warrenville, was charged with attempt to manufacture methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine and unlawful conduct to a child. She and Harrelson were placed in the Aiken County detention center, where they remained on Monday.
According to a report by the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office, the state Highway Patrol had a checkpoint set up on Anthony Drive in Warrenville on Sunday when a vehicle approached the checkpoint, stopped, then began traveling in reverse “at a high rate of speed, weaving all over the roadway.”
The vehicle then turned around and began to flee, according to the report. The driver reportedly tried to jump from the driver’s seat while the vehicle was still in motion, and he fell down as the vehicle stopped. The suspect then fled on foot and was caught by officers a short distance away.
While searching the vehicle, officers found what appeared to be a meth lab in the center console in the front seat, according to the report.
The passenger, McKee, reportedly had meth in her purse and is also the mother of the two children that were seated in the back seat of the vehicle when the incident happened.
Teddy Kulmala covers the crime beat for the Aiken Standard. He is a graduate of Clemson University and hails from Williston.