Texas police officers mistook cat litter for the drug methamphetamine during a traffic stop in Houston last month.
Ross LeBeau was pulled over for a traffic violation in December when cops discovered what they thought was a large, half pound stash of crystal meth hidden in a sock in his car.
He was then arrested in what was believed to be the biggest “drug bust of the year” in Harris County.
Lebeau spent three days in jail and missed work, even though he told authorities it was his father who filled up a sock with the cat litter for both he and his sister to use in their cars to keep the windows from becoming foggy.
LeBeau was arrested and spent three days in jail. The proud Harris County Sheriff’s Office was quick to send out a press release complete with LeBeau’s mugshot detailing the big bust.
“They thought they had the biggest bust in Harris County,” LeBeau said. “This was the bust of the year for them.”
However, LeBeau’s stash was nothing more than a supply of cat litter that his father gave him to keep in his car to reduce fog.
Despite two field tests conducted on the “meth” coming back as positive, a third test carried out in a forensic lab revealed the reality.
It isn’t clear how the first two tests were so glaringly wrong, but LeBeau said he doesn’t blame the police. He however does want an apology and said the arrest caused him to lose work.
“Ultimately it might be bad testing equipment that they need to re-evaluate,” his attorney said.
An HSCO statement read that LeBeau said he did not know what was in the sock, but later indicated on social media that it was cat litter.
“Regarding this incident all indication shows that the deputies followed basic procedures and followed established protocol related to this incident,” the statement read. “Because of the established procedures in place and this contraband was submitted to the Institute of Forensic Science it was determined not to be methamphetamine and charges were dismissed.”