Heroin charge looms for Whidbey woman charged in fatal wreck

A 22-year-old Oak Harbor woman who is facing three vehicular homicide charges was back in court Monday for allegedly dealing heroin.

Oak Harbor police arrested Samantha Bowling over the weekend on suspicion of possession of heroin with intent to distribute and use of drug paraphernalia.

Detective Carl Seim, the drug enforcement officer for Oak Harbor Police Department, said he received tips submitted through the police department website that Bowling was dealing heroin from her home in the Auld Holland Inn trailer park.

In response, Seim worked with a confidential informant, who made two heroin buys from Bowling in the last month, he said. Based on that, the police received a warrant to search the home.

Seim said he recovered 3.4 grams of heroin from the trailer, which is worth around $300. He said Bowling admitted in an interview that she was selling and using heroin.

Also, Seim said he arrested Bowling’s boyfriend on suspicion of possessing drug paraphernalia.

Monday afternoon, Samantha Bowling sat silently in Island County Superior Court as attorneys argued about her bail.

Deputy Prosecutor David Carman said he was in the “unfortunate position” of asking the court to hold Bowling in lieu of $100,000 bail. He pointed out that she’s been charged in six prior cases in “her young life” and that she’s facing very significant prison time in a triple vehicular homicide case.

“She’s selling drugs, according to the report, and she’s using drugs, according to the report,” Carman said.

Bowling’s attorney, Nancy Neal of Coupeville, argued that her client doesn’t pose a significant flight risk and suggested that bail be set at $25,000.

Judge Alan Hancock followed the prosecution’s recommendation and set the bail at $100,000.

Bowling was in the front passenger seat when her friend, 20-year-old Jordyn Weichert of Oak Harbor, was driving a Chevrolet Blazer in North Whidbey on the night of Sept. 3. According to court documents, Bowling was holding the steering wheel while Weichert was taking off a sweater, then they lost control and the Blazer crossed the centerline and struck an oncoming car.

The crash killed two passengers in Weichert’s Blazer, 25-year-old Jacob Quistorf of Oak Harbor and 26-year-old Francis Malloy of Oak Harbor. The driver of the other car, 33-year-old Brian Wood of North Vancouver, British Columbia, was also fatally injured.

Wood’s 31-year-old pregnant wife, Erin Wood, was seriously injured, but recovered. Bowling also suffered a hip fracture, while Weichert’s injuries were minimal.

Weichert was charged in Island County Superior Court on three counts of vehicular homicide and two counts of vehicular assault; she’s being held on $500,000 bail. Bowling was charged with three counts of vehicular homicide and one count of vehicular assault. She was originally released without bail. Both women pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Carman has said he plans to pursue the charges as “driving under the influence” prongs of the charges. Investigators recovered suspected heroin, cocaine, marijuana and a gun at the scene of the accident, according to court documents.

Blood was drawn from both women for testing after the accident. According to Island County Prosecutor Greg Banks, Weichert’s blood allegedly tested positive for carboxy-THC, methamphetamine and opiates. Carboxy-THC is a metabolite of THC created by the body after marijuana is consumed. The opiates found in her system could be from several drugs, including heroin.

Bowling’s blood allegedly tested positive for carboxy-THC and methamphetamine, according to Banks.

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