Domestic leads to drug discovery

Published 12:00 am Friday, December 14, 2007

It started out as a domestic and quickly evolved into a drug investigation as well.

Ironton police charged Robert Ellis, 43, of 1412 S. Ninth St., and his stepson, Russell Deerfield, 24, of South Point, with domestic violence Wednesday afternoon after the two of them were involved in an altercation at the residence.

While officers were conducting the investigation into the domestic dispute, they discovered a marijuana-growing set-up in the basement of the Ellis home.

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“We found approximately 50 plants ranging in size from two inches tall to two feet tall,” Capt. Chris Bowman said.

“They had several different containers to grow them in.”

The Ironton Fire Department was called to the scene to help because the basement was covered with water and electricity lines were running overhead where emergency services personnel were standing. Firefighters helped remove evidence from the house and provided officers with boots and other protective gear.

The Lawrence County Drug and Major Crimes Task Force and Lawrence County Prosecutor’s Office are also involved in the investigation that continues. Bowman said other charges will likely be filed.

Ellis was taken to a local hospital for treatment of a broken ankle. Deerfield was also taken to a hospital for treatment of a laceration to the back of the neck and bruising. He was treated and released.

Two pit bulls found at the residence were confiscated. The incident happened just before 2 p.m.