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Inmates Say They Bought Key Meth Ingredient At The Brainerd Army Store

Chattanoogan.com, January 22, 2014

Two incarcerated former methamphetamine cooks testified Wednesday that they made numerous purchases of a key meth-making ingredient at the Brainerd Army Store.

Terry Honeycutt, who operated the Brainerd Army Store with his brother Tony, is charged with selling a regulated substance, iodine, in spite of knowing it was being used to make meth.

According to federal prosecutor Jay Woods, both Brian Tiddle and Michael Page were some of the people cooking meth using iodine purchased from the Honeycutts.

In Tiddle's testimony, he said someone had told him he could get iodine in the form of the product called Polar Pure at the Brainerd Army Store.

In Page's testimony, he also said he had purchased Polar Pure from the Honeycutts on multiple occasions.

Both men said they remembered going on a day when the Brainerd Army Store was out of Polar Pure. According to Tiddle's version, when it was announced the iodine was not in stock, an entire line of people left the store.

Defense Attorney Chris Townley questioned the men on allegations that both were hoping to have their prison sentence reduced through cooperating.

He said that while the ultimate decision to lighten their sentences rested with the judge, the prosecutor would first have to make a motion. He also said that if their testimony was not considered truthful, the prosecutor would also be the one taking away their plea deal.

After Page testified, attorney Townley questioned if Page was ever really a customer.

When Page was first arrested for manufacturing meth, he had a lengthy interview with narcotics officers. While he listed multiple places in North Georgia and East Tennessee where he went to buy iodine, the Brainerd Army Store was not on this list.

In fact, it was not until later, when the Brainerd Army Store was being investigated, that Page claimed to have frequently purchased iodine there.

Others who testified on Wednesday included Chattanooga Police Officer Bill Bailey and former DEA Task Force Agent David Shelton.

The trial is set to continue on Thursday morning with the state set to close its case and the defense begins.

Federal Judge Sandy Mattice is presiding over the case.

Tony Honeycutt, the older brother, earlier pleaded guilty and was sentenced to serve five months in federal prison and five months in home confinement. He also was required to make a $200,000 forfeiture.