MELCHER-DALLAS — Deputies from the Marion County Sheriff’s Office located 44 THC cartridges during a search warrant in Melcher-Dallas on Tuesday.

Levi Orion VanderEcken, 28, of Melcher-Dallas, was charged with controlled substance violation, drug tax stamp violations, possession of drug paraphernalia, child endangerment and interference with official acts.

At approximately 8:15 p.m. Tuesday, authorities entered the residence at 501 NE 2nd St. in Melcher-Dallas with a search warrant, where VanderEcken lived. When officers arrived, VanderEcken saw them and took off running out the front door in an attempt to elude them, according to court filings.

Through court filings, Marion County Sheriff’s Office deputies said that they located 44 THC cartridges that contained a high-level of THC. Law enforcement also reported locating drug paraphernalia, a digital scale and messages from VanderEcken’s phone to other individuals who VanderEcken was distributing THC products to.

A child was living in the home and law enforcement said could reach items of drug paraphernalia.

Kyle Ocker is the regional editor of the Centerville Daily Iowegian, Knoxville Journal-Express, Pella Chronicle and Oskaloosa Herald. He can be reached at

Kyle Ocker has been the editor of the Knoxville Journal Express since November 2016. He formerly held the titles of sports editor and associate editor at the Centerville Daily Iowegian, a sister paper to the Journal Express.

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