December 12th, 2019: The Seneca County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Unit and Criminal Investigation Division executed a search warrant at 2868 Munson Road, in the Town of Ovid.
Subsequent to the warrant execution Investigators charged Benjamin R. Nichols, age 26, of the same address with the following charges: Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the second degree- Class A Felony Unlawful Manufacture of Methamphetamine in the third degree- Class D Felony 2 counts of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the third degree- Class D Felonies Criminal Possession of a Firearm- Class E Felony Sex Offender Failure to Register Address- Class E Felony 2 counts of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the fourth degree- Class A Misdemeanor 3 counts of Criminally Using Drug Paraphernalia – Class A Misdemeanor Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the seventh degree- Class A Misdemeanor
Upon the execution of the search warrant, Deputies discovered a clandestine methamphetamine lab. Deputies also discovered numerous rifles, a 9mm handgun, methamphetamine, metal knuckles, digital scales, and approximately 1000 rounds of ammunition. Nichols is a convicted felon and is not allowed to possess firearms. Deputies were assisted at the scene by the New York State Police Contaminated Crime Scene Emergency Response Team and Seneca County Codes. NYSPCCSERT collected all of the hazardous materials from the residence. Seneca County Codes then deemed the property inhabitable and condemned it.
Nichols was held at the Seneca County Correctional Facility to await arraignment at CAP court. After arraignment he was committed to the Facility on no bail pending a hearing.
Sheriff Luce stated that the case began when Investigators developed information while doing a check on Nichols as a registered sex offender. Nichols is currently a level two registered sex offender. The Sheriff added that the case was an example of excellent police work and follow up that eliminated a hazard to the community.