Oak Harbor police seize estimated $40K in illegal drugs
By JESSIE STENSLAND
Whidbey News Times Assistant editor
December 2, 2012 · Updated 6:21 AM
A detective with the Oak Harbor Police Department arrested an alleged Oak Harbor drug dealer who police believe has been selling literally pounds of methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine and marijuana — tens of thousands of dollars worth — on Whidbey Island each week.
Detectives recovered an estimated $40,000 worth of the drugs from the suspect, 26-year-old Michael “Cupcake” Koepke, and a backpack he was carrying, according to the police.
Prosecutors charged Koepke in Island County Superior Court Nov. 27 with possession with intent to deliver methamphetamine, possession with intent to deliver heroin, possession with intent to deliver cocaine and possession with intent to deliver marijuana.
The counts were charged with “aggravating circumstances” because Koepke had recently been released from prison and was on probation.
Koepke was released from jail after posting $100,000 bail Nov. 28.
Detective Carl Seim, the department’s drug enforcement officer, developed probable cause to arrest Koepke for meth possession by conducting a “controlled buy” earlier this year.
On Nov. 21, a department of corrections officer was staking out a home on Heller Road frequented by drug users.
The officer spotted Koepke and a woman getting into a red Honda Civic outside the house.
Oak Harbor police officers pulled the car over. Seim said he searched Koepke and found a plastic bag in his pocket containing 58 grams of suspected methamphetamine.
The car was towed to the Oak Harbor Police Department and searched after Seim obtained a warrant. Detectives found a backpack that Koepke had been seen wearing.
The backpack allegedly contained a large amount of suspected drugs.
Seim said he recovered about 75 grams of heroin, which was worth about $5,000, and 250 grams of meth, worth about $25,000. Inside a fake Barbasol shaving cream can, the officers found 86 grams of cocaine, worth about $8,600, and 23 grams of meth, worth about $2,300, according to Seim.
In addition, the detectives found $3,000 worth of pot in a shoulder bag that was next to the backpack, according to the report.
Another passenger in the car, 18-year-old Kaitlyn Raavel, was arrested on suspicion of burglary in an unrelated case.
The arrest was not Koepke’s first brush with the law. He was detained by border patrol agents at a Whitney Drive location in the county on Oct. 28, less than a month before his arrest.
Koepke allowed the agents and a deputy to search his backpack, which contained 29 grams of suspected meth, 59 grams of suspected heroin and 360 grams of marijuana, according to Seim’s report.
Koepke was released from prison in March after serving three years on meth dealing and marijuana possession charges.
“What’s amazing is that he gets out of prison and is back in business right away,” Detective Sgt. Teri Gardner said, noting that he allegedly sold meth to a police informant just two months after being released.
Seim conjectured that Koepke may have been one of the biggest drug dealers in the area.
“He is dealing in large amounts of methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine and marijuana and re-ups every two to three days,” Seim wrote in his report.
“This equals to nearly 2 pounds of methamphetamine being sold on the streets of Island County each week. With the amount of heroin and cocaine we recovered from his backpack, I would estimate Koepke is selling nearly one-half pound of heroin and cocaine on the streets of Island County each week.”
Contact Whidbey News Times Assistant editor Jessie Stensland at email@example.com or 360.675.6611 ext. 5056.