Drugs found in truck lead to charges

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BONNERS FERRY — On Dec. 19, an arrest was made for possession of methamphetamines, heroin, methadone, and drug paraphernalia.

At 12:21 a.m., Bonners Ferry Police Sergeant Willie Cowell pulled over a black truck with Washington plates that had one headlight out. The truck pulled into the Kootenai River Inn parking lot, where Cowell made contact with the driver, Scott Miller of Coeur d’Alene, who was the sole occupant of the vehicle.

According to the police report, Cowell smelled burnt marijuana coming from the vehicle. Per Cowell’s request, Bonners Ferry Police Officer Raul Lopez arrived on scene to assist.

Miller was confirmed by the Boundary County Sheriff’s Dispatch to be driving with a suspended driver’s license, and when Cowell spoke with him about it, Miller allegedly denied knowledge of the situation.

According to the police report, Miller also denied any knowledge of marijuana or paraphernalia in the vehicle, stating he had purchased the truck a week prior. He also said he did not know of anyone else who may have used his vehicle.

Cowell explained to Miller that he had probably cause to search the vehicle.

“Upon searching the Chevrolet, I recovered a quick access, single pistol safe which had both a digital and keyed entries,” wrote Cowell in his police report. “The pistol safe was located directly under the forward portion of the driver’s side seat on the Chevrolet.”

According to the police report, there were multiple stickers on the safe, including an Oakland Raiders sticker, which matched a Oakland Raiders lanyard that was attached to the key ring that Miller had in his possession during the initial contact. Cowell was able to match one of the keys on the ring and used it to open the gun safe.

Inside the case, Cowell smelled heroin, and found multiple hypodermic syringes with attached needles, that appeared to be used, according to the police report. He also found other items of drug paraphernalia, .25 grams of heroin, a baggie with trace amounts of methamphetamine, two methadone pills, as well as a white powdery substance that was later sent off to the Idaho State Police Laboratory.

Miller was placed under arrest but allegedly continued to deny knowledge of the drugs or paraphernalia, suggesting that the safe had been left there by the previous owner. According to the police reports, he also changed his original story, stating that multiple people drove his truck.

Cowell asked Miller if he would be willing to provide a urinalysis to prove the fact that he didn’t have any drugs in his system, explaining that the results would be included in the report to the Prosecutor’s Office.

“Miller initially agreed to provide a UA, remaining steadfast, no drugs would return with positive results in his system,” wrote Cowell in his police report. “I explained there were hypodermic syringes found in the pistol case and I asked Miller, whom was wearing a long-sleeved sweatshirt, if there would be any reason he would display track-marks on his arms.”

According to the police report, Miller unequivocally stated there would be no track marks. Cowell did not believe Miller was telling the truth, and continued the search of the vehicle, explaining to Miller that he would give him some time to think about his present predicament in hopes he would be honest with him.

After the search, Cowell returned and asked Miller again when the last time he had ingested heroin. Miller allegedly responded by saying he did not use heroin.

“I told Miller, I did not ask whether or not he uses heroin, I asked him when the last he used heroin was,” wrote Cowell in his police report. “Contrary to Miller’s earlier statement of having never ingested heroin, Miller now stated to me it had been approximately four months since he has ingested the drug.”

According to the police report, Cowell then raised the sleeve of Miller’s sweatshirt which revealed needle punctures and track-marks on his arm, that appeared to have been made within 48 hours.

Miller was transported to the Boundary County Jail, and when Cowell asked him about providing the UA, Miller had allegedly changed his mind stating that he was going to, “... fight the charges and win in court.”

Miller is scheduled to appear in court for his preliminary hearing at 1:30 p.m. Dec. 29, and his bond has been set at $40,000.

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