Sheridan Police Arrested Suspected Killer For Drugs Hours Before Finding Body

Sheridan police arrested Israel Melvin, 22, Sunday morning after reportedly finding him delusional in a restaurant bathroom full of marijuana smoke. Hours later, they found the body of a woman they believe he killed. 

Clair McFarland

January 10, 20243 min read

Sheridan 12 10 23
(Cowboy State Daily Staff)

A Sheridan man accused of beating a woman to death in her home was arrested the day of her death on suspicion of marijuana use — before authorities found her body.  

Israel Macedo Melvin, 22, is now charged with second-degree murder, according to a Wednesday press release by the Sheridan Police Department.  

Department agents responded about 7 p.m. Sunday to a call about a man who’d found his 64-year-old wife dead inside a home at 945 Gladstone Street.

The evidence indicates she died of blunt force trauma, the statement says.  

Detectives “developed probable cause” to arrest Melvin, who lives at that same address.

A prosecutor charged Melvin late Tuesday, the statement adds.

Already Arrested

But Melvin was already in police custody by the time police found the woman’s body. He’d been arrested about 11 a.m. Sunday, after a concerned caller reported him that morning for lying in a road, walking in circles and stumbling around by the Burger Wagon, according to an evidentiary affidavit filed Monday in Sheridan Circuit Court.  

When police arrived, the caller told them to check inside the local Wendy’s restaurant.  

Sheridan Police Department Officer Aaron Bass knocked at the bathroom door in the Wendy’s and called out for anyone inside to open up for police, but no one did.  

The manager said officers could go into the locked bathroom. They unlocked the door and went inside.  

Apparent marijuana smoke had flooded the bathroom, the affidavit says.  

Melvin was within the smoke, talking out loud to himself with no pants or sh

Israel Melvin
Israel Melvin (Cowboy State Daily Staff)

oes on. He was pacing in his shirt and underwear, barefoot in the bathroom with a white vape pen in his hand, the affidavit says.  

On ‘Venom’

Melvin was reportedly narrating his own movements out loud, talking about moving his arms as he was detained. He asked if he was “in heaven,” the affidavit relates.

Officers asked him what he took.  

He’d taken a lot of “venom,” Melvin reportedly answered.  

He “continually writhed and moved around” while officers put him in handcuffs.  

The affidavit says police found several rolled joints labelled as Delta 8 or Delta 9, a cannabinoid variation that can come in legal forms.  

Bass asked for emergency medical personnel to come to the scene. They did, and found Melvin’s heart rate unusually elevated and he complained that he was hot, the document says.  

Medical workers told police to take Melvin to the emergency room, and they did.  

Bass noticed marks on Melvin’s inner elbow joints that looked like “fresh track marks” from injecting drugs, the officer later wrote.  

While at the hospital, Melvin allegedly exhibited “hypersexual” behavior along with cotton mouth symptoms. Bass took these as more signs of marijuana use. The affidavit says Melvin has a history of using methamphetamine and marijuana together. 

For his Sunday-morning arrest, Melvin faces up to six months in jail and $750 in fines. If he’s convicted of second-degree murder, however, he faces between 20 years and life in prison.

Clair McFarland can be reached at

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Clair McFarland

Crime and Courts Reporter