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By SAM ALLEN
Daily News Staff Writer
A search of a downtown hotel room Tuesday in Ketchikan culminated in the arrest of a 22-year-old Washington resident allegedly in possession of nearly a half pound of methamphetamine with a street value of $60,000.
Spencer Dolph Hill was charged with three felonies: one count each of misconduct involving a controlled substance in the second and third degrees, as well as a third-degree weapons misconduct.
The most serious of these is a Class A felony with a maximum penalty of 20 years in jail and a $250,000 fine, according to Alaska State Statutes.
At Hill's arraignment Wednesday afternoon, District Court Judge Kevin Miller set Hill's bail at $100,000.
According to court documents the Ketchikan Police Department learned through other drug investigations that Hill was in town carrying a large quantity of drugs that he brought from Seattle. Through KPD's investigation, they found the hotel room where Hill was staying.
Hill checked out of his hotel room before police searched it, but officers allegedly found a used syringe and signs of methamphetamine and heroin use.
During the search, Hill returned to the room to retrieve a forgotten set of keys. According to court documents, police detained him based on what was found in the room, and processed a search warrant for his person and vehicle.
During this time a female showed up at the hotel room to see Hill, but wasn't charged with anything. In addition, a couple of people who had driven Hill to the hotel were outside in the car and questioned, but were not charged with anything, according to KPD Lt. Andy Berntson.
Officers found a gram of heroin on Hill, according to the police report. Inside the car, officers found a 9 mm handgun.
Officers discovered documents that showed Hill was staying at a different room on Bayview Street. Officers obtained another search warrant for the room.
The room was essentially a room in a residence, according Berntson.
Officers allegedly recovered approximately 218.8 grams of meth, a digital scale, a food saver heat sealer machine, a paper currency counting machine, and a loaded .22 caliber Kel-Tec firearm.
The .22 caliber firearm was reported stolen from a vehicle in Ketchikan on Oct. 21.
Berntson said Hill has been in Ketchikan about two months and doesn't believe that he arrived with the drugs.
"It's believed that he hasn't been holding on to them the whole time," said Bernston, "It appears to have been something that's been ongoing."
However, how the drugs got into Ketchikan is still being investigated.
"You just always assume when you catch something like that if you don't directly take it out of travel status that you obviously didn't get the whole thing," said Berntson, "So assuming when it got here it was probably, you know, there's definitely more than what we seized, if not significantly more."
At Hill's arraignment Wednesday, Ketchikan District Attorney Timothy McGillicuddy said it was unlawful for Hill to possess a firearm because of a previous felony for stealing a vehicle in Washington State in 2012.
McGillicuddy also stated that Hill was out on a $15,000 bond for a pending felony offense in South Dakota, where he and a co-defendant allegedly were caught with 22 pounds of marijuana.
Hill turned down a court appointed attorney, saying he could afford one.
When asked by Miller if he would like to say anything about the charges in front of him, Hill said, " I really want to go home and see my mom, your honor."
Hill's next court appearance is Nov. 13.
Earlier this week Alaska State Troopers arrested two Alaska residents in Ketchikan with alleged intent to distribute drugs on Prince of Wales Island.
Troopers picked up Kirk Allyn Vandoren, 56, at the Ketchikan International Airport after he arrived from Seattle on Tuesday.
Troopers obtained a search warrant and found 6.07 net grams of heroin and 14.22 net grams of methamphetamine concealed in his body, according to court documents.
Based upon the quantity of the drugs and other information not detailed in the report, the troopers believed Vandoren possessed the drugs with the intent to deliver the drugs to person on Prince of Wales island.
The estimated street value of the heroin if sold at the common street distribution quantity of 0.1 grams per $100 on Prince of Wales Island would be around $6,000. The estimated street value of the methamphetamine if sold at the common street distribution quantity of 1.0 grams per $150 on Prince of Wales Island would be $2,100.
Vandoren was arraigned Wednesday afternoon in Ketchikan District Court.
Vandoren was charged with misconduct involving a controlled substance in the second and third degrees.
His next court appearance is Nov. 15. Miller set his bail at $15,000.
On Monday, another individual was arrested on similar drug charges.
Troopers contacted Kevie Marie Frank, 25, before she boarded a ferry headed to Prince of Wales Island.
Troopers obtained a search warrant after talking with her, and searched her. According to the affidavit, troopers allegedly found 2.52 gross grams of heroin and .59 gross grams of methamphetamine .
According to the troopers report, she intended to deliver the drugs to someone on Prince of Wales Island.
The seized drugs will be sent to the State of Alaska Crime Lab for testing.
Frank was charged with two felonies: misconduct involving a controlled substance in the second degree and misconduct involving a controlled substance in the third degree.
Frank was arraigned in Ketchikan Superior court Monday, her bail was set at $1,500, her next court appearance is Nov. 15.
Berntson said all of the above drug cases are unrelated.