Smell leads to meth arrests

Reports of a bad smell led Elkins Police Department officers to discover an allegedly active methamphetamine lab at an apartment on Davis Avenue Monday morning.

An early morning phone call to the department described Apartment A at 17 Davis Ave., located above Lexy’s bar, as smelling like ammonia, Patrolman B. D. Tice told the Inter-Mountain. Following the phone call, officers reported to the scene.

“We attempted to make contact (at the residence),” Tice said.

Officers knocked on the apartment door and reportedly became personally aware of the ammonia smell when the knock was answered by the occupants, Melissa Dawn Hedrick and Ellis Randall Hedrick. The police then entered the residence, Tice said, and noticed various chemicals that can be used to manufacture methamphetamine.

Melissa Hedrick and Ellis Hedrick were taken into custody and are currently detained at the Tygart Valley Regional Jail. Bond for each has been set at $50,000.

Tice said that the West Virginia State Police were contacted so they could provide a certified officer to secure the meth lab.

Apartment A is now considered condemned and cleanup efforts, to rid the apartment of meth-related chemicals, are underway, Tice said. The Department of Environmental Protection is in charge of cleaning the affected area.