Man wanted on meth charges prompts another drug-making scare at North Charleston hotel, police say

John Eric Phillips, 34, of Otranto Road was arrested on a charge of manufacturing meth Wednesday night after an anonymous tipster summoned the North Charleston Police Department to the Relax Inn at 2512 Ashley Phosphate Road.

The same man accused of cooking meth at his parents' North Charleston home last week was arrested Wednesday after the police said he made more of the drug in a hotel room.

John Eric Phillips, 34, of Otranto Road faces a charge of manufacturing methamphetamine after an anonymous tipster summoned the North Charleston Police Department to the Relax Inn.

The ordeal prompted an evacuation of the hotel at 2512 Ashley Phosphate Road so crews could remove meth-making materials and clean the room.

Phillips had been wanted on the charge since April 18, when the authorities said he broke into his parents' Otranto Road home with a baseball bat and had equipment there to make meth. He had left, though, before the police showed up.

On Wednesday, a woman who was in the room with him called police dispatchers around 5:30 p.m. to report his whereabouts. She didn't give her name at the time.

When police officers knocked on the door of Phillips' room, the woman told them to wait a minute while she donned some clothes.

She soon opened the door but didn't say whether Phillips was there. She gestured to indicate that he was, though, the police said in an incident report.

The woman, a 27-year-old resident of Deerwood Drive in North Charleston, later told the police that she was the one who had given them the tip.

The officers walked inside the room and found the bathroom door shut. Thinking Phillips had locked himself inside, they said they tried calling him out.

Ten minutes passed, and no one emerged.

The officers soon heard Phillips say that he didn't want any trouble and that he was coming out. But he hadn't been in the bathroom, they said.

"The suspect's voice was coming from under the bed," an officer wrote in the report.

Phillips was handcuffed and decontaminated of any of the toxic ingredients used to make meth. He was examined at Trident Medical Center and later jailed.

Officers reported that they sensed an odor indicating that someone had been cooking meth in the room.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration was in charge of the cleanup. The police said they found 4 grams, or 0.14 ounces, of meth.

Officers added that the woman who had tipped them off said Phillips had been physically abusive. They noticed several injuries on her, they said. Phillips was not immediately charged in an assault.

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