Five arrested for meth activity


Todd Faulkner

MCCRACKEN COUNTY, Ky. - Authorities arrested five people Sunday morning in connection to methamphetamine lab activity.

Members of the McCracken County Sheriff's Department received information about suspects in the area of Lane Road West, off of Schneidman Road, manufacturing methamphetamine.

Investigators launched a surveillance operation Sunday morning of that area and noticed suspicious activity involving people loading and unloading items used in the making of meth from a red 1998 Ford Contour. Two men then left that home in the car and Sheriff's Deputies pulled the driver over. At that time the passenger, Joel-James Michael Copley, took off on foot and two members of the Sheriff's Department were forced to fight with Copley to arrest him.

During the struggle Copley hit detectives a number of times forcing one detective to use a taser on Copley to subdue him. Copley was found with several grams of meth in his possession.

Meantime, the driver of the car, John Goodnight, drove off involving a deputy in a short chase and then eluded authorities. Goodnight's car was later found abandoned in an alley between Old Mayfield Road and Goodman Street. Officers later found Goodnight inside his home nearby and he was arrested.

Inside the car, authorities found an active meth lab. The lab contained a large quantity of Ether, Ammonium Nitrate, salt, Liquid Fire, Coleman Fuel, Toluene, Drain opener, Psudoephedrine and Lithium. The chemicals were soaking in tubing, funnels, baggies and other items.

Other people were arrested in connection to Sunday's events. In all, the Sheriff's Department arrested John Goodnight Jr., Joel-James Michael Copley, Matthew (Matt) Vernon Bradley, Jewel E. Houser and Rachal Reyes.

The investigation is ongoing and McCracken Co. Sheriff Jon Hayden expects more arrests in the near future.


An extensive investigation by the McCracken County Sheriff's Department into reported and suspected Methamphetamine Manufacturing led to numerous arrests Sunday morning. It also led to the recovery of stolen property from a residential burglary that occurred several weeks ago from a Kevil area home.

Sheriff's detectives have been receiving information that suspects in the area of Lane Road West (which is located off of Schneidman Road) had been manufacturing methamphetamine in that area.

A surveillance operation was underway Sunday morning at about 8:45AM. McCracken Sheriff's Det. Sgt. Jesse Riddle and Marshall County Sheriff's detective Don Tidwell observed suspicious activity coming from a garage behind a residence located at 4549 Schneidman Rd. (This is at the Lane Road West intersection) They observed suspects there loading and unloading from vehicles, items used in the manufacture of methamphetamine. A 1998 Red Ford Contour occupied by two white males left that residence after being seen loading these suspicious items into the vehicle at about 10:35AM. Deputies stopped that vehicle near the Schneidman Road and Star Lane. Deputies immediately observed items in the vehicle being used to manufacture Meth. The passenger in that car (identified as being Joel-James Michael Copley) attempted to flee on foot from the car after it was stopped. Det. Riddle and Tidwell had to fight with the suspect in an attempt to arrest him. During the struggle, Copley hit both detectives numerous times causing some injury to Det. Riddle. A taser had to be deployed to subdue him. He was found to have several grams of Methamphetamine on his person.

While they were in a physical altercation with him, the driver of the car sped off. Another deputy began a vehicle pursuit but lost the suspect (identified as John Goodnight) due to Goodnight's extreme speeds down Schneidman Road and onto Old Mayfield Road. Minutes later, his vehicle was located abandoned in an alley between Old Mayfield Road and Goodman Street. The vehicle had crashed at some point blowing out the right front tire. (photo of car attached) A search of the area led officers to a residence located at 2601 Fairmont Street, where Goodnight was found hiding. His abandoned vehicle was found to have inside an active Methamphetamine lab. The lab was found to contain a large quantity of ether, Ammonium Nitrate, salt, Liquid Fire, Coleman Fuel, Toluene, Drain opener, Psuedoephedrine and Lithium soaking in ether, tubing, funnels, baggies, and other related items. Some of the above described items found in the car were located in a large cooler that was locked with a padlock. Copley was found to be in possession of a key that opened the lock. This vehicle after being processed was seized.

At 2601 Fairmont Street (the location Goodnight was found and where he resides) was searched. While there, a vehicle pulled up. The driver was identified as being Matthew Bradley of Paducah. He was arrested after he was found in possession of two baggies containing Methamphetamine. Sheriff's detectives had been over the past several days, looking for Bradley as he was a suspect in a residential burglary of a home in the Kevil area of McCracken County. That burglary occurred several weeks ago. A search of the Fairmont Street home, led to the discovery and seizure of several items suspected as being stolen from the Kevil home. They included a large big screen television, a surround sound system, etc. (That part of this investigation is continuing.) Methamphetamine residued paraphernalia was also found in the home, along with a .32 caliber pistol. John Goodnights girlfriend (whom lives at the home also was arrested and charged with possession of a handgun by a convicted felon. She was identified as Rachel L. Lorene.

Detectives also searched the garage and adjoining residence where the surveillance operation began located at 4549 Schneidman Road. They arrested Jewel E. Houser (the resident there) on Complicity to Manufacture Methamphetamine and other charges. Marijuana was found at the location as well as other items related to the manufacturing process.

This investigation is continuing.


Houser, Jewel E. 54 yoa of Paducah, Ky

Charges: Complicity to Manufacture Methamphetamine / Poss of Methamphetamine / Possession of Drug Paraphernalia


Copley, Joel-James Michael 38 yoa of Metropolis, Ill

Charges: Complicity to Manufacture Methamphetamine / Resisting Arrest / Assault 3rd Degree on Police Officer / Fleeing or Evading / Possession of Methamphetamine


Goodnight Jr., John 38 yoa of Paducah, Ky

Charges: Fleeing or Evading / Complicity to Manufacture Methamphetamine / Possession of a Handgun by a Convicted Felon / Possession of Methamphetamine / Possession of Drug Paraphernalia / No or Expired Registration Plates / Disregarding Stop Sign / He was also served with an active warrant of of Hopkins Co. Ky for Failure to Appear which is related to a Receiving Stolen Property Charge


Lorene, Rachel L. 35 yoa of Paducah, Ky

Charges: Possession of a Handgun by a Convicted Felon


Bradley, Vernon Matthew (Matt) 39 yoa of Paducah, Ky

Charges: Possession of Methamphetamine


Additional charges against these suspects are possible as the investigation continues. Additional persons may be charged in connection with this investigation.