LAKE STEVENS — Police seized stashes of guns and drugs from a Lake Stevens man with alleged ties to a white supremacist group, according to new criminal charges.
Prosecutors have charged Josiah Tyrell Degenstein, 27, with two counts of unlawful firearm possession in the first degree, a felony, in Snohomish County Superior Court.
Degenstein has been “documented as a ‘member’ of the white supremacist group the ‘Northwest Crime Family,’” reported his probation officer, Matthew Anderson.
In early September, an officer on patrol near Granite Falls noticed two men outside a storage unit. The men ran away, and the officer reportedly noticed an AR-15 next to a car inside the unit.
Police learned Degenstein was renting the unit. He was ineligible to possess a firearm because of nine prior felony convictions.
After obtaining a search warrant, police found the first batch of guns inside. The weapons included:
a 5.56 mm rifle;
.223 caliber AR-15 rifle;
two AR-15 rifles without serial numbers.
Investigators also discovered duffle bags full of ammunition, scopes, bulletproof vests and other gun accessories, according to a police report.
But it wasn’t until late Dec. 29 that police tracked him down, investigators wrote.
Officers spotted him getting into a blue Chrysler in the driveway of an Everett house when police approached him. Officers broke the driver side window, subdued him and arrested him, according to court papers. Inside the car, officers found “dealer” amounts of meth, suspected fentanyl pills, packaging materials, a scale and a pistol, according to court documents.
They also found a lanyard with a key for another storage unit of Degenstein’s, detectives wrote. The storage unit contained another arsenal, including five guns and a Wildcat C5 crossbow.
Once again, scopes, bipods, grips, bulletproof vests and more accessories were found, according to police.
Degenstein had two previous convictions for unlawful firearm possession.
In June 2016, police located the suspect in the parking lot of a Walmart in Marysville. After an officer saw Degenstein had arrest warrants, he was taken into custody, according to the report. Police obtained a warrant for the car and found a pistol under his seat. In that case, he was released from jail prior to his trial date.
In late December 2016, police were looking for Degenstein again after a hit and run left one officer injured. He was later arrested in an ampm in Everett, carrying a loaded pistol.
Degenstein was sentenced to 7½ years in prison for six felonies: burglary, felony drug possession, drug possession with intent to distribute, two counts of second-degree unlawful possession of a firearm and attempting to elude police. In December 2021, he was released from custody.
Degenstein had been on probation since his release. He reportedly stopped checking in with his probation officer in April 2022, detectives reported.
No further details were given in court papers about his purported ties to the “Northwest Crime Family.”
Corinne Klein, a supervisor for the deputy prosecutors on the case, declined to comment because of the “pending nature of the investigation and criminal case.”
Degenstein was being held Friday in the Snohomish County Jail with bail set at $150,000.
Jonathan Tall: 425-339-3486; firstname.lastname@example.org; Twitter: @EDHJonTall
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