STANTON — A convicted sex offender and alleged armed robber has been apprehended more than a month after allegedly stealing a car and turning it into a meth lab.
Stephen Michael Matthews II, 27, of Greenville, was arraigned Monday in 64B District Court in Stanton. He is charged with two felonies — operating/maintaining a meth lab and failure to comply with sex offender reporting duties.
Matthews allegedly stole a white four-door 2000 Kia Sportage after the vehicle was loaned to him for a short period of time from a Reynolds Township resident. The vehicle’s owner reported it stolen on Sept. 18.
Montcalm County Sheriff’s deputies recovered the vehicle on Sept. 30 on Paepke Road near McBride Road in Maple Valley Township. The vehicle had minor damage and appeared to have run out of gas. Deputies found several components used for making methamphetamine inside the vehicle, along with prescription drugs and a stolen license plate.
The Central Michigan Enforcement Team (CMET) responded to the scene to conduct a hazardous waste cleanup.
Matthews was arrested Saturday on the meth lab charge. He is also wanted on a warrant for armed robbery in Kent County.
Matthews was convicted of attempted accosting children for immoral purposes in 2003 and registered as a sex offender on April 8, 2003, according to the Michigan State Police Sex Offender Registry.
In August 2011, Matthews was arrested as part of a breaking and entering investigation by Michigan State Police in the Trufant area. Matthews had an outstanding warrant and was arrested for violating the Sex Offender Registry Act, as well as a parole violation. He had recently moved from Mecosta County to Montcalm County and failed to report his address. He had also failed to register his vehicle.
He previously failed to register as a sex offender in 2004 and was also convicted of assaulting or resisting and obstructing a police officer in 2009.