Sheriff: Couple arrested after officer delivers package of pot | Crime
Two Baxter County residents were arrested Thursday after a sheriff’s investigator disguised as a Federal Express worker reportedly delivered a package of marijuana to their home.
On Thursday, June 28, deputies arrested Justin James Bowden, 27, and Idalia Chavez, 23, at their home in the 1300-block of West Road in Mountain Home.
According to Sheriff John Montgomery, law enforcement authorities in California notified his office that suspected drug parcels were being shipped from California and delivered by Federal Express to the home.
On Thursday, the local Federal Express office received another package to be delivered to the home. After a K-9 officer alerted on the package, a plain clothes undercover officer posing as a delivery driver took it to the couple’s home where it was received by the suspects, Montgomery said.
Soon after the transaction, deputies executed a search warrant. Inside the package deputies reportedly found 9.9 ounces of marijuana. According to Sheriff Montgomery, investigators also seized drug paraphernalia, scales, packaging, bank accounts, computers and a small amount of cash. He said there was also evidence that approximately 14 packages had been delivered from California.
On Friday, June 29, Federal Express reported another packaged had arrived from California address to the West Road address. Deputies searched the package and reportedly found 27 ounces of marijuana with a street value of $10,800.
Bowden and Chavez were each arrested and charged with the following:
- Delivery of a Schedule VI controlled substance (marijuana)-Felony
- Possession of a Schedule VI controlled substance (marijuana) with the purpose of delivery-Felony
- Possession of drug paraphernalia-Felony
Bowden was released from custody after posting bond in the amount of $25,000. He’s scheduled to appear in Circuit Court on July 12.
According to Sheriff Montgomery, it was determined that Chavez is an illegal alien. Federal authorities from the Office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have placed a detainer on Chavez due to her immigration status.
Agencies involved in the investigation, searches and arrests included the sheriff’s office, Arkansas State Police and the Mountain Home Police Department.
Photos provided by Baxter County Sheriff's Office.