(Walls, MS) The town of Walls is the smallest in DeSoto County, but it’s growing.
"When I took over the department, I only had three officers, and now I’m up to 14 officers," said Police Chief Reginald Harris.
But one of those officers is in hot water over a case of mistaken identity.
He took a meth lab during a traffic stop, then brought it back to the police station.
It all started about 2:30 Tuesday afternoon with a traffic stop at Old 61 and Goodman Road.
As the officer approached the 2000 Mustang, he saw the passenger in the back seat stuff something into the trunk area.
So the officer got the driver’s permission for a search.
"As he was doing the search, that’s where he came across what he suspected to be what they call 'shake and bake,'" explained Harris.
He says it’s a less volatile form of meth-making, but still dangerous.
Apparently the officer didn’t realize exactly what he had, so he loaded up the evidence and his suspects, then brought them to the police station as part of normal police procedure.
But there’s nothing normal about the chemicals used to make methamphetamine, which can explode in some instances.
"Our guy knows that now and everybody else is gonna know it because we gonna get educated on it" said Chief Harris.
He says Hazmat crews had to bag the officer’s uniform, and thoroughly clean out his truck.
"For future reference, it will not be brought to the police department anymore. It will be secured.”
He says from now on, meth will stay where it’s found until Hazmat can get rid of it safely.