Drug Bust in Loves Park

By: Meghan Dwyer Email
By: Meghan Dwyer Email

UPDATE -- Diane Balcom's home was destroyed by the mobile park owner on Aug. 2, before her three daughters, ages 8, 13, and 16 had a chance to remove their personal belongings.

Two weeks before schools starts, the girls are left with nothing.

They say police officers told them it would be okay to return to the home, after testing showed they were not exposed to damaging levels of chemicals. But when they showed up Thursday morning the home was almost completely destroyed, and nothing had been salvaged.

The girls grandmothers' are sharing custody of the three girls and are furious authorities didn't inform them that the house was being torn down.

The Winnebago County Department of Public Health says there's no way to know if the home's destruction met proper environmental protocol for dealing with meth labs.

Phone calls to the mobile home park owner were not returned before press time.

23 News will continue to investigate.

LOVES PARK (WIFR) -- Yesterday afternoon, the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Police Narcotic Unit, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Illinois State Police executed a search warrant at 5112 Pebble Lane, Loves Park, Illinois for methamphetamine.
Ingredients for the production of methamphetamine were located as well as the finished product. There was an extreme chemical odor coming from inside of the house indicating that the methamphetamine was being produced at the residence.
44 year old Diane Balcom was placed under arrest and transported to the Winnebago County Jail. Ms Balcom lives at the location with three children.

She was charged as follows:
- Violation of the Illinois Controlled Substances Act:
- Unlawful Possession with intent to deliver methamphetamine
- Methamphetamine related child endangerment
- Unlawful possession of methamphetamine material
- Participation of methamphetamine manufacturing

Balcom will be presumed innocent unless proven guilty in court.

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