TACOMA, WA – Today the Pierce County Prosecutor’s Office charged Rickey Claude Yandell, 49, with one count of unlawful possession of a controlled substance. Letters sent to him in the mail had been soaked in methamphetamine.
“This is a new take on an old problem – smuggling drugs into jail,” said Prosecutor Mark Lindquist.
On January 4, 2017, a Pierce County Corrections Officer along with her K9 partner, Rocket, were asked to investigate a letter that had been sent to Yandell while he was in custody at the Pierce County Jail. The letter was addressed to Yandel and was suspicious because of its odd physical appearance. K9 Rocket alerted on the letter addressed to Yandell. It was one of ten letters placed on the floor. Rocket was then taken to Yandell’s cell and conducted a second search. Yandell’s paperwork was spread on the floor, and Rocket alerted on another letter with two sheets of paper. 1/3 of a page had been torn off. Deputies field tested the pages from both letters and got a positive result for methamphetamine.
This type of crime has become more and more common all over the country as inmates try to get drugs inside jails and prisons via the U.S. Mail.
Bail is set at $50,000.00.
Charges are only allegations and a person is presumed innocent unless he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.