KETCHIKAN (KDN) — A third individual has been arrested and charged in a case involving a seizure of suspected fentanyl, heroin and methamphetamine that occurred on Dec. 22 at Ketchikan International Airport and a local residence, according to court documents and a Ketchikan Police Department announcement.
Tony L. Teal, 38, of Ketchikan, was arrested on Thursday and has been charged with two counts of second-degree misconduct involving a controlled substance and one count of third-degree misconduct involving a controlled substance as a conspirator in the case.
On Dec. 22, Rachel L. Peterson, 51, of Ketchikan, and Amy C. Rothlisberger, 26, of Montana, were contacted by law enforcement officers after arriving at the Ketchikan airport on a flight from Seattle,
Warrant searches of Peterson and Rothlisberger and their belongings resulted in the seizure of about 96 grams of black tar heroin, 182 grams of methamphetamine and about 2,900 counterfeit “M30” tablets suspected to contain the synthetic opioid fentanyl, in addition to about $23,000 in cash, according to police and court information.
The street value of the drugs involved is about $221,650, according to the Ketchikan Police Department information.
The probable cause statement filed with the court stated that Peterson "admitted to arranging" for Rothlisberger to transport the heroin and methamphetamine for Peterson, and that the substances seized from Rothlisberger belonged to Peterson.
Peterson is charged with two counts of second-degree misconduct involving a controlled substance for possession with an intent to distribute fentanyl and heroin, and one count of third-degree misconduct involving a controlled substance with intent to distribute methamphetamine.
Rothlisberger is charged with one count of second-degree misconduct involving a controlled substance for possession with intent to distribute heroin, and one count of third-degree misconduct involving a controlled substance for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine.
According to court documents in Teal’s case, the execution of search warrants located a notebook in Rothlisberger’s backpack that contained two Alaska phone numbers — those of Peterson and Teal.
Warrant searches allegedly found information that Teal had purchased Rothlisberger’s plane ticket, and that showed Teal discussing details of the trip with Peterson.
Law enforcement officers contacted Teal during a traffic stop on Dec. 30, according to KPD. A warrant search of Teal’s person and residence allegedly found him to be in possession of five suspected fentanyl pills, in addition to more than $21,000 in cash and an “AR patterned rifle with a barrel of less than 16” in length,” according to a KPD announcement. Also, the search of his residence allegedly found “numerous” digital scales with suspected drug residue on the surfaces, according to court documents.
Teal was arrested Thursday and transported to the Ketchikan Correctional Center.
At Teal’s felony first appearance on Thursday, Ketchikan District Court Judge Kevin Miller set Teal’s bail at a $50,000 cash performance bond and a $20,000 cash appearance bond. The posting requirement for the appearance bond is $2,000 cash.
Teal requested a court-appointed attorney. His next scheduled court appearance is a preliminary hearing on Jan. 31.
The next scheduled court appearances for Peterson and Rothlisberger are preliminary hearings on Friday, according to court information.
The investigation of the overall case has had participation from the Alaska State Troopers, Port of Seattle Police, Ketchikan International Airport Police and the Southeast Alaska Cities Against Drugs task force, in addition to KPD, according to a KPD statement.