SYLVAN BEACH >> After securing a search warrant, police raided a Sylvan Beach home around 6 a.m. Monday and arrested Wallace James Edick, 43, and charged him with allegedly running a meth lab.
Edick was arraigned in federal court in Syracuse around 11:30 a.m. on charges of manufacturing and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine.
He was placed in the custody of U.S. Marshals without bail or bond. He is scheduled to appear in a federal detention hearing Thursday, Aug. 22 at 11:30 a.m. At that time, bail or bond might be considered and it is anticipated he will enter a plea with the assistance of a court-appointed attorney, according to court officials.
Wallace “Jamie” Edick
The arrest comes on the heels of an 18-month-long investigation of Edick’s activities, conducted jointly by the Oneida City Police, New York State Police and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).
The gray and light blue, modern-style house sits at the corner of Vienna Road and Pine Avenue in the village. A separate two-stall garage sits next to it.
All morning, police investigators were pulling possible evidence from the garage on the 2501 Vienna Road property, where police say Edick had been staying and allegedly cooking meth using the “one-pot” or “shake-and-bake” method.
The contents of the garage were removed by specially trained police
Edick was arrested and convicted on similar charges in 2011. His father, Wallace A. Edick, 63, who owns the property and lives in the house, said that his son served jail time for that conviction, was released from parole about five months ago, and has been living in the garage. At that time, his father said his son had passed drug tests and his parole officer reported he was doing well.
Through the early part of Monday afternoon, members of the state police Contaminated Crime Scene Emergency Response Team (CCSERT) were clad in safety suits equipped with breathing masks and air monitors that sound off an alarm if they come in contact with hazardous gases as they removed items from that garage.
The team responds to any clandestine drug lab or other crime scenes that could have nuclear, biological, chemical or explosive contamination present. They’re trained to safely collect evidence.
After evidence processing, cleanup up can be tricky, said Jack Keller, public information officer for the New York State Police. Keller said that when a meth lab is located, the items in it are treated as hazardous materials and sealed or incinerated.
Police wouldn’t comment how long they believe Edick had been cooking in the garage, but noted that he had been the subject of their investigation for 18 months.
Edick’s father was at work when he heard about the Monday morning raid, and he returned home.
“I’m disgusted,” said an emotional Edick while watching the CCSERT team remove items from the garage. “He lied to me. He told me he was not doing that stuff anymore.”“He said he was trying to turn around,” the elder Edick said.
He said has fond memories of his son growing up. There were camping and fishing trips. Edick was the coach for his son’s Pop Warner football team.
Edick said he had no idea what his son had been doing in the garage.
“Now this happens,” he said, adding that police told him he couldn’t re-enter his home until the scene had been cleared by investigators.
When police finished their investigation of the garage around 2 p.m., they reported that they had in fact found equipment used to produce meth. As police made this report, a hazardous material cleaning crew was rolling in.
Neighbors on Pine Avenue said they never suspected any drug activity. Stephanie Clapper, 30, lives across the street from the Edicks. She described the son, who usually goes by “Jamie” as friendly, “a really nice guy” who would “give you the shirt off his back.”
She said Edick recently gave them some toys for their children. Her husband, James Clapper helped Edick repair a vehicle. “He’s a real nice kid,” said James, “A good neighbor. We’ve never seen anything and never smelled anything.”
However, Clapper said he has quickly learned, “Don’t underestimate good people.”
Police said the investigation is ongoing.