Child welfare check leads to meth bust



Monday morning of last week Oneonta police officers responded to a Crimestoppers tip concerning the welfare of two children.

When officers arrived at the scene they opened the door to the house and were met by a haze lingering in every room of the residence.

In the home, officers found a weighable amount of finished meth product and components used to make meth including tubing, Drano, Coleman fuel, and fertilizers.

Three people were in the house, Sondra Ellis, 35, and her two children.The children, ages 3 and 1, were found in the living room and removed immediately. Ellis was arrested at the scene and faces four charges – unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of a controlled substance, manufacturing of a controlled substance (1st), and chemical endangerment.

The children were turned over to their grandmother who, with insistence from police, bought the children new clothes and new car seats because all items were contaminated. According to the Oneonta Police Department, the grandmother took them to the doctor the next day, and both were checked out and said to be healthy.

Upon interviewing Ellis, Investigator Mike Harris said she gave a statement that her husband had allegedly stolen a trailer from O’ So Good Barbecue. On Tuesday, the trailer was found in the West Blount area

Wednesday, Sondra’s husband Jonathan Ellis, 21, was taken into custody by Warrior police and was then turned over to Oneonta on that same day. He has been charged with unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of a controlled substance, manufacturing of a controlled substance (1st), and chemical endangerment. He is also charged with theft of property.

When arrested, Jonathan allegedly admitted to stealing the trailer as well as a boat which he sold to a scrap yard in Brooksville.

They are both in Blount County Jail. Her bond is set at $186,000, and his bond is set at $236,000.