Northwest man faces drug charges after police find suspected meth lab in apartment

A Northwest Washington man faced drug charges Thursday after D.C. police raided his apartment Wednesday night and found a suspected methamphetamine lab, according to charging documents.

Authorities charged Hugh L. Elsbree with possession with intent to distribute cocaine and “methylene dioxymethamphetamine, that is, Ecstasy,” court papers say. Police served a search warrant Wednesday night at his fourth-floor apartment at the Park East building in the 1800 block of Summit Place, where police said they found chemicals of an “inactive Methamphetamine lab,” including 304 grams of suspected meth and seven grams of cocaine, the documents say. It’s unclear from the documents whether the substance Elsbree is charged with possessing is the same that police believe was being manufactured.

Elsbree was taken into custody in the hallway outside the apartment. Police found his fiancee and 6-week-old daughter inside, the documents say. All three were evaluated by D.C. fire department medics and were believed to be safe from the chemicals, the papers say.

Investigators found the suspected meth, estimated to be worth $30,000, in a freezer in the kitchen, and a police field test confirmed the presence of amphetamines, the documents say. Authorities also found muriatic acid ammonia, kerosene, a Bunsen burner and other chemicals believed to be used to make meth, but there was no indication that a “current cook” was in progress, the documents say.

On April 7, Elsbree was arrested on Columbia Road in a fight, court papers show. After the arrest, officers found 14 grams of rock cocaine on Elsbree. He was charged with possession with intent to distribute.

Two days later, he was released from jail on his own recognizance, pending a May court appearance, according to court documents.

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