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Police investigate suspected Function drug lab



Swarms of police and other authorities descended on a warehouse in Function Junction on the morning of June 2 as they executed a warrant on a possible drug lab parked outside a warehouse.

At about 11 a.m. the police began to arrive at the Alpha Lake Road, warehouse. There were four RCMP vehicles, as well as a fire truck and ambulance. Shortly afterwards a Hazardous Materials Unit vehicle was brought to the site, followed by a hazardous materials emergency response team. Authorities set up tents next to the building, and charged fire hoses in case they were required.

RCMP Sergeant Shawn LeMay confirmed to Pique that police were executing a search warrant on a five-tonne truck located at the side of the building. Police had reason to believe that the truck was being used as a drug lab to produce substances such as hashish and "other chemical drugs."

Sgt. LeMay said police don't suspect that the lab is in the building but took precautions in case any chemicals leaked and posed a danger to nearby residents and businesses.

"This is our normal process for safety of the public and ours," he said. "What people may not understand is that when these labs exist they are full of hazardous chemicals, and in fact the byproduct of the residue afterwards of the cooking or manufacturing of chemicals is extremely hazardous to us as a community, the people living nearby and the environment."

Paul Mitts, a longtime Whistler resident, was one of three tenants evacuated from the top floor of the building. He said police had been on the scene since about 8:30 a.m. Tuesday morning and had already arrested residents who lived in another suite the day before.

Mitts initially said that police had been called to the house because of a domestic dispute between a male and a female resident in the other suite. Both left with police for interviews and they asked Mitts if he wanted to talk to them.

Mitts went on to say that the female resident later returned, packed up her belongings and appears to have moved out of the suite. RCMP confirmed that one suspect was still in police custody on Wednesday morning.

"She came back in the afternoon, there were two constables when I was there, she grabbed all her stuff and she's gone," he said.

Mitts also said that he's seen the truck that the police are investigating but claims they won't find anything inside it.

"I'm going to laugh when they crack that door and see nothing but tools," he said.

Another resident of the building who asked not to be named said police banged on the door this morning and asked everyone to leave without telling them why.