September 23, 2014

Medina
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Suspected meth makers arrested

Strader

Leskin

BRUNSWICK — The Medina County Drug Task Force arrested two men last week suspected of manufacturing methamphetamine.

Task force Director Gary Hubbard said agents had been watching Adam Strader, 28, of Cleveland, and Michael Leskin, 41, of 1210 N. Carpenter Road, Brunswick, for a couple months after receiving a tip the pair were cooking meth at Leskin’s house.

He said that on Aug. 1, while conducting surveillance there, task force agents saw Leskin and Strader load items into a cargo van. They notified the Medina County Sheriff’s Office, and deputies pulled the van over on Interstate 71 near state Route 83 in Harrisville Township.

Hubbard said a Strongsville K-9 police officer was brought in, and the dog found marijuana, meth and a meth pipe. Police searched the vehicle and found ingredients for cooking meth, he said.

Task force agents arrested Strader and Leskin each on a charge of illegal assembly or possession of chemicals, a third-degree felony, punishable by up to five years in prison.

Both men were taken to the Medina County Jail.

Wadsworth Municipal Court records show that Strader and Leskin were arraigned via video on Aug. 2 in front of acting Judge Thomas Morris. Both men were found indigent and their bonds were set at $30,000, 10 percent.

Strader bonded out on Aug. 3. Leskin remained in the jail Friday.

Records show Leskin has been charged with 45 separate misdemeanor offenses in Medina Municipal Court since September 1990.

This is the second meth-manufacturing incident the task force has handled this summer. On June 19, agents neutralized a mobile meth lab — chemicals mixed in a 2-liter pop bottle — in Wadsworth’s Bird Street Park.

Hubbard said that while Summit County leads the state in meth activity, authorities there are applying enough pressure that the manufacturers and dealers have begun to spill over into Medina County.

He said meth manufacturing and portable “shake-and-bake” meth labs are highly volatile and easily can explode if disturbed.

“If someone finds a suspicious bottle, give the police a call,” he said. “The officers in the county are all trained on what to look for and then they will call us.”

Contact reporter Dan Pompili at (330) 721-4012 or dpompili@medina-gazette.com.