The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Local News

March 21, 2013

Conneaut cops’ mercy mission leads to meth-maker

CONNEAUT — Police officers asked to check on the well-being of a North Amboy Road resident discovered instead methamphetamine-making operations, according to reports.

Investigators said Wednesday a 31-year-old man faces charges. “We have a suspect who was in control of the room and was living in the house,” said Police Chief Charles Burlingham.

Charges could be filed today in Conneaut Municipal Court, officials said.

The incident began shortly before 1 p.m. Monday, when police were asked on check on the health of a individual at the house, located a short distance north of West Main Road (Route 20).

While walking through the house, officers noticed components of a meth lab in a bedroom, Burlingham said. Officers who secured a search warrant to examine the entire house found “multiple” meth labs on the premises, he said.

A short time later, police followed tracks in the snow to another nearby building, where more meth-making labs — believed to be under the operation of the same man — were uncovered, Burlingham said.

The chief also said a Conneaut jail inmate needed medical attention after he reportedly drank a cleaning fluid as inmates were scrubbing the facility late Monday afternoon. The inmate, identified as Taylor Batchelor, closed the door to his cell and then drank the fluid shortly before 6 p.m., Burlingham said. Other inmates alerted police to the situation, he said.

Batchelor was taken to UH Conneaut Medical Center and then was transferred to a Cleveland-area hospital, Burlingham said. Batchelor was expected to return to Conneaut jail shortly, Burlingham said.

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