Deputies mistook cat litter for meth, man says

Ross Alexander LeBeau was originally charged with possession

By Janelle Bludau - Reporter

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas - Ross Lebeau is smiling in his mug shot because he knows the truth.

"I was dumbstruck. I couldn't believe they actually thought it was meth," Lebeau, 24, said. "I tried to think that this was just a nightmare, I was just waiting to wake up from it."

Lebeau was stopped by officers on Dec. 5 after he failed to use his blinker.

Deputies say Lebeau admitted to having marijuana in his console, and so he gave them consent to search the rest of his vehicle, and in the trunk they found a sock full of something.

"At the time, I didn't know what was in there. But I knew it wasn't meth, or anything that could be drug related or harmful," Lebeau said.

He knew it wasn't meth, but officers weren't sure. They conducted two field tests, and both came back positive for the drug.

"I was freaking out. My heart was beating a thousand miles an hour," Lebeau said.

He was arrested, and what began as a minor infraction soon turned into three nights in jail.

"I knew once I had my fingerprints in and was looking around the scenery, I didn't belong in there," Lebeau said.

It wasn't until he spoke to his dad a few days later that everything turned around.

The stuff inside the sock that tested positive for meth twice was, in fact, cat litter put in Lebeau's trunk by his father.

"This was supposed to be a simple life hack to keep the fog out of the inside of your windshield, and then it turns into what they call a meth bust," Lebeau said.

Since the arrest, Lebeau's name has been bashed and his family now embarrassed, all over a simple trick and two faulty tests.

"When they have the top-of-the-line equipment to protect themselves, and then they have the lowest quality to protect us from them, it doesn't make sense. It need to be equal," Lebeau said.

Harris County Sheriff's Office released a statement saying deputies followed basic procedures and established protocol. The contraband was submitted to the Institute of Forensic Science, and it was determined not to be methamphetamine.

All charges have been dropped against Lebeau.

Copyright 2017 by KPRC Click2Houston. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.