Douglas and Katherine Theriault Franklin County Detention Center photo

FARMINGTON — A couple pleaded guilty Monday in Superior Court for their part in a methamphetamine manufacturing operation on May 15 at 488 Knowlton Corner Road.

Douglas S. Theriault, 38, of Farmington pleaded guilty to aggravated operation of a methamphetamine laboratory, criminal conspiracy to commit unlawful operation of a methamphetamine laboratory and three counts of endangering the welfare of a child.

His wife, Katherine S. Theriault, 29, of Saco, formerly of Farmington, who was indicted on the same charges as her husband was in July, pleaded guilty to a lower felony charge of criminal conspiracy to commit unlawful operation of a methamphetamine lab. All the charges she was indicted on were dismissed as a result of an agreement with the state.

According to Assistant Attorney General David Fisher, Farmington police officer Jacob Richards and others responded to a medical call at 12:57 a.m. at the Knowlton Corner residence. Douglas Theriault was on the floor. His wife and their three children ages 7, 3 and 1 were at the residence.

According to an affidavit filed with the court by Sgt. Edward Hastings IV, he was met on the front porch by a 7-year-old child who directed him inside where Hastings met with Katherine Theriault who was exhibiting signs of methamphetamine use.

Hastings administered Narcan, an opioid blocker, to Douglas Theriault along with other first-aid measures before he was taken by ambulance to Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington.

Richards noticed a “one-pot meth lab” in a one-gallon milk jug in the yard, according to Fisher. Local officers called in the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency, which confirmed it was consistent with the manufacturing of methamphetamine. There was also a gas generator outside that could be used in the manufacturing process.

While executing a search warrant, police found a box of components used to make meth in Douglas Theriault’s bedroom, Fisher said. Katherine Theriault slept in a different room at the mobile home.

She  “admitted” to police that she bought pseudoephedrine, a primary ingredient in meth, Fisher said. She told investigators her husband learned to make meth on a visit to Aroostook County, Fisher said.

No actual methamphetamine was found at the residence, he said. Evidence sent to a laboratory came back inconclusive. The children were not exposed to the drug and didn’t show any signs of being affected by it, he said.

The couple’s children are staying with a family member. Maine Department of Health and Human Services is involved in the case.

Sentencing was delayed in Katherine Theriault’s case for 18 months so that she could complete tasks outlined in an agreement with the state.

If successfully completed she will be able to withdraw her plea to the felony and plead to a misdemeanor charge. If not successful, she faces an open plea of up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine, Justice Robert Mullen said.

The recommended sentence for Douglas Theriault is five years to the Department of Corrections with all but 18 months suspended, Fisher said. It would be followed by two years probation. There would also be a $400 fine. There would be concurrent sentences for other charges.

Sentencing was delayed until the end of April so Douglas Theriault can complete the residential treatment he has been enrolled in for  2½ months.

A conviction on the aggravated operation of a methamphetamine laboratory carries a maximum of 30 years in prison and a $50,000 fine. The conspiracy charge is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine, and endangering the welfare of a child carries a maximum six months in jail.

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