By Eric Stevick Herald Writer
EVERETT — What began as a routine traffic stop turned into much more: an alleged gang member with roughly $25,000 cash, more than 30 grams of methamphetamine and five loaded firearms in his car.
Everett patrol officer Stephen Ross initially pulled over the purple 1996 Chevrolet Caprice on Monday because the car had been reported sold in October but the title had not been transferred.
The driver, 20, told the officer that his license was suspended.
When Ross asked if he had any firearms, the Everett man sighed, according to court records.
The officer seized a handgun that had been concealed in the man’s waistband, police said.
The suspect also had two rolls of rubber-banded $20 bills totaling more than $2,000 in his right front pants pocket, court papers said.
The car was impounded and police obtained a search warrant. When the officer opened the car door on Tuesday, he found a digital scale covered with small clear crystals on the front passenger seat.
“That’s what we call a clue in our line of work,” Everett police Sgt. Ryan Dalberg said.
The officer later found a meth pipe.
Inside the trunk, he discovered a black canvass bag that contained 33 grams of methamphetamine, $19,787 in cash along with digital scales and a notebook apparently tracking drug sales, according to court papers.
He also found four loaded firearms inside the trunk, including two sawed-off shotguns as well as a handgun reported stolen from Snohomish.
A locked safe included $3,450.
“The investigation is ongoing,” Dalberg said. “We are in the process of bringing in federal agencies,” including the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
In June, the regional U.S. Attorney’s Office announced it would be cracking down on crimes involving guns after a spate of violence in the Seattle area.
U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan said at the time: “If you use a gun in a crime, you will do more time. You will do federal time.”
Bail was set at $50,000 on Wednesday in Everett District Court.
Police believe the suspect is a member of the Sureno street gang. He was driving along Everett Mall Way when stopped by police.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446, firstname.lastname@example.org.