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      Police chief hospitalized after exposure to shake and bake meth

      Suspect Doug Gehlert

      The Belle Police Chief is in fair and stable condition after inhaling toxic vapors from what appears to be a shake and bake meth lab.

      Chief Michael Dixon Jr. stopped a vehicle near Belle City Park Thursday at 12:30 p.m. During the stop, Dixon said someone inside the car threw something out the window. When he examined the object, Chief Dixon inhaled anhydrous ammonia. The vapor is used when making meth.

      According to the Centers for Disease Control, exposure to anhydrous ammonia can be immediately dangerous to one TMs life or health. It TMs especially dangerous when transported in an unapproved container.

      Chief Dixon is at the Phelps County Regional Medical Center. According to the Belle mayor, Dixon likely will stay in the hospital through Sunday.

      In an email from the police chief, Dixon said medical staff are attempted to reduce his risk of permanent lung damage. They TMre also trying to keep out lung infection and pneumonia, and reduce his blood pressure and heart rates.

      Law enforcement officials responded to the scene and arrested two individuals. Prosecutors charged Doug Gehlert, 39, and Terri Daniels, 29, with:

      -2nd degree Felony Assault on a Law Enforcement Officer

      -Possession of a Controlled Substance

      -Possession of Anhydrous Ammonia in an unapproved container

      -Unlawful Possession of Drug Paraphernalia

      Gehlert and Daniels each posted a $50,000 bond at the Maries County Jail.

      Gehler recently was indicted on federal charges of Conspiracy to Manufacture Meth.