RICHMOND — A methamphetamine lab bust at the Bel Air Motel in Richmond led to the arrest Wednesday morning of five people.
Anthony Debord, 44, Carolyn Eckler, 33, and Bobbie L. Evans, 30, all of Richmond, were charged with manufacturing methamphetamine. Douglas Pearson, 24, and Amber Dean, 21, also both of Richmond, were charged with complicity to manufacturing methamphetamine.
Richmond officers were sent at 12:40 a.m. to the Bel Air Motel, 1509 Lexington Road across from Arlington House, after receiving a report that meth was being made there, according to an RPD report.
When they arrived, the officers reported making contact with an occupant of one of the rooms and finding several one-step meth labs in plain view.
Officers secured the premises and detained several people believed to be involved in the manufacturing operation, the report stated. The RPD meth lab cleanup team, Richmond Fire Department and EMS units were summoned to the scene to assist. The clean up and processing of the scene continued until late morning.
The officers determined that one of the suspects had rented three rooms at the motel, including the room were the labs were discovered, according to the report.
The five suspects were decontaminated and examined at Baptist Health Richmond prior to being taken to the Madison County Detention Center.
One of the suspects in the meth lab operation, Anthony Debord, also was arrested on an outstanding warrant charging him with flagrant nonsupport. The warrant was issued in December and alleges that Debord owes $40,085 in child support dating back to March 1998.
Another suspect in the meth operation, Bobbi L. Evans, was arrested on an outstanding warrant charging her with passing a counterfeit bill in February. The manager of Red Roof Inn reported Feb. 4 that Evans presented a counterfeit $100 and asked for change. Evans was an employee at the hotel at the time, the report stated. The manager told police he questioned the authenticity of the bill but was assured it was valid currency.
When the bill later was taken to a bank, it was determined to be counterfeit. Evans did not return to work after the incident, the report stated.
Richmond Motel Evacuated After Meth Lab Discovered In Room
A Madison County motel was evacuated Wednesday morning after a meth lab was discovered in one of the rooms overnight.
Police say it appears a group of people rented out one motel room at the Bel Air on Lexington Road to house their meth-making operation. The group also rented out both neighboring rooms in what detectives suspect was an attempt to create a buffer between their operation and any other guests.
Firefighters were called out to the motel around 1:00 a.m. Wednesday morning on reports of a chemical smell. Once they arrived, they found seven people across three motel rooms contaminated by “hazardous materials,” firefighters said. Officials said there were several one-step meth labs in plain view inside a room.
Those people were taken to the hospital to be decontaminated, and then taken to be questioned by authorities. Meanwhile, others in the motel also had to be removed as firefighters began cleaning up the room where the meth lab had been set up.
“I don’t think they were actively cooking,” said Richmond Police Assistant Chief Bob Mott. “There were several reaction vessels that had been in there. Looks they had been cooking over a period of days at least, maybe even longer than that.”
Authorities say most of those who were decontaminated will likely be charged. No others staying at the motel were contaminated, say Richmond Police.
Anthony Debord, 44; Carolyn Eckler, 33 and Bobbi L. Evans, 30, were charged with manufacturing methamphetamine.
Douglas Pearson, 24 and Amber Dean, 21, were charged with complicity to manufacturing methamphetamine.