REPUBLIC Seven people have been charged in Ferry County Superior Court with dealing drugs in town.
As of Monday, most had been released from jail. One defendant, Dakota T. Devalkeneer, 18, remained in jail.
Charges were filed last week against Krista R. Lievense, 47; Spring M. Butschke, 21; Kaylia A. Elderd, 22; Nikolas V. Somday, 25; Devalkeneer; Kathryn E. Ramsey, 22, and Roland F. Ciais, 28. All are from Republic.
All seven were arraigned Friday in court. Deputy Prosecutor Emma Paulsen and the Ferry County Clerk’s Office said charges include:
• Lievense, unlawful use of a building for drug purposes and three counts of delivery of a controlled substance-heroin;
• Butschke, three counts delivery of a controlled substance-heroin;
• Elderd, unlawful use of a building for drug purposes, two counts delivery of a controlled substance-heroin;
• Somday, one count delivery of a controlled substance-heroin;
• Devalkeneer, two counts delivery of a controlled substance-heroin and selling drugs for profit;
• Ramsey, two counts delivery of a controlled substance-heroin and use of drug paraphernalia;
• Ciais, two counts delivery of a controlled substance-heroin.
All the delivery charges carry an enhancement of occurring within a school zone. All the charges are felonies except the paraphernalia charge against Ramsey.
Paulsen said Lievense and Elderd, who live next door to each other in the Republic Gardens Apartments, 627 S. Madison St., allegedly allowed drugs to be dealt from their homes.
Ciais is charged separately with delivery from his nearby home.
The arrests came last Tuesday as the culmination of a two-month investigation by the Republic Police Department and the North Central Washington Narcotics Task Force, Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers said Thursday. Ferry County police agencies are part of the task force.
Rogers said the task force and Republic Police Department served three warrants for home searches.
Paulsen credited Republic police with spearheading the investigation.
They “really did an exceptional job investigating this” and spent “huge amounts of hours” on the case, she said.
Although seven suspects were arrested, “we are still looking for three additional suspects to arrest,” Rogers said.
The Republic Police Department and task force officers “put in a lot of hours into this case over the last two months to get this done,” he said.