Meth lab in Mandarin, apartments evacuated

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- An investigation is underway after authorities found meth-making materials inside an apartment unit Friday morning.

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office responded to The Waterford at Mandarin apartment complex in the 11200 block of San Jose Boulevard around 2 a.m. in reference to a domestic disturbance that involved several people shouting.

When JSO officers went inside the apartment, they noticed a strong odor and found several meth-making materials inside.

John Ladisa just moved into the complex nine months ago.

"I didn't think it would happen here because when I moved in, the guy said the crime rate was low," he said.

Police said people were actively cooking meth inside a unit in building 21.

The people involved used the 'shake and bake' method involving a Gatorade bottle to make the meth, according to investigators.

The narcotics team and bomb squad unit were called out to process the apartment. They determined the surrounding units were unaffected because they don't share centralized air-conditioning.

Employees with the apartment did not want to go on camera, but told First Coast News the contaminated unit will be thoroughly cleaned.

Regina Hamilton lives nearby the apartment complex and couldn't believe it when she heard the news.

"I never see a lot of police around, so it's really a big concern, and I think a lot of people are shocked," she said.

Police are questioning several people but no one has been charged.

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