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Lehigh man gets time-served sentence for meth lab operation

A Lehigh County man was sentenced to time-served after previously pleading guilty to operating a methamphetamine lab at his then residence and resisting arrest when police responded to his home on another matter.

Jason M. Trinkle, 39, of Whitehall, was sentenced by Judge Joseph J. Matika to time-served, 332 days, to one day less 24 months in prison on a charge of illegal dumping of methamphetamine waste. He was also placed on probation for a year on a resisting arrest count.

Trinkle was arrested on Aug. 22, 2015, when state police at Lehighton responded to Christman Road in East Penn Township, for a reported domestic incident.

On scene troopers said they learned that Trinkle was involved in a dispute with a 37-year-old woman and a 5-year-old boy. While on scene, troopers learned that Trinkle was wanted on an arrest warrant issued out of Lehigh County for failure to appear on a charge of possession of a controlled substance.

While at the residence, troopers observed several indicators of criminal activity, which led to a search. During the search troopers found an active meth lab, along with products and ingredients used in the making of methamphetamine.

While Trinkle was in custody and handcuffed behind his back, he jumped off a chair he was sitting in and ran across a deck at the residence. He then jumped over the railing, leaped off the second story and fell about 15 feet to the ground. When he tried to get up, troopers fired a stun gun from the deck area toward the ground, striking Trinkle, which led to him being taken back into custody.

Trinkle was transported to the Lehigh Valley Hospital-Cedar Crest for treatment of injuries he sustained when he jumped. He was originally charged with operating a methamphetamine laboratory and illegal dumping of methamphetamine waste, escape, all felonies; misdemeanor counts of drug offenses, resisting arrest, terroristic threats, simple assault and endangering the welfare of children; and a summary charge of harassment. All the other charges were dropped in a plea bargain with the district attorney’s office.

Since his arrest Trinkle said he entered an inpatient rehabilitation program and successfully completed it. He told Matika, “Going to the rehab got me my life back.”

Matika also ordered him to get a drug and alcohol evaluation, supply a DNA sample, make restitution of $9,956.03 for the cost of clearing up the meth lab, court costs of about $1,000 and pay a $50 per month supervision fee while on parole.