CIRCLEVILLE – A Stoutsville man involved in a meth operation at Elsea Mobile Village was found guilty of two drug crimes in Pickaway County Common Pleas Court last week.

William E. Markin, 39, will be sentenced following a presentence investigation by the court after a Pickaway County jury found him guilty of third-degree felony aggravated possession of drugs and second-degree felony illegal manufacture of drugs relating to a February drug bust.

Markin and three others – John C. Edler, 48; Matthew S. Griffin, 22; and Christy J. Lowery, 32 – were arrested Feb. 1 after undercover detectives with the U.S. 23 Major Crimes Task Force were tipped off that they would be producing meth at Edler’s home at 210 Villa Drive.

The Circleville Police SWAT team made forcible entry to the home after obtaining a search warrant and found Edler and Markin in the back bedroom along with an active meth lab and the finished meth product. Lowery and Griffin were found in the bathroom next to the bedroom.

Edler, who pleaded guilty to illegal manufacture of drugs in June and was sentenced to three years in prison, testified during the trial that Markin crushed the generic Sudafed pills in the kitchen area and “peeled” the batteries for him in the bedroom.

Markim admitted to using meth and THC and said he knew Edler was making meth in the trailer, but he was only living with him because he had nowhere else to go. He testified that Edler never made meth outside the bedroom, but he failed to explain why he was in the bedroom when the police entered the house.

The jury deliberated for about an hour and 45 minutes before finding Markin guilty.

Griffin, 22, of Meadow Drive, Circleville, pleaded down to a first-degree misdemeanor of attempting to manufacture illegal drugs in March and was ordered to 180 days in jail (suspended) and one year on probation, according to Circleville Municipal Court records.

Christy J. Lowery, 32, of Skyline Drive, South Bloomfield, pleaded guilty to illegal manufacture of drugs earlier this month and is awaiting sentencing.