Citizen-law enforcement cooperation results in significant drug seizure

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by Marissa Lorenz
A citizen report on Sunday, July 17, of an erratic driver heading towards Kremmling on Highway 9 resulted in a multi-agency response, an arrest, and confiscation of numerous kinds and quantities of drugs and drug paraphernalia.

Andrew Knopp, 28, of Steamboat Springs, was arrested and faces 23 charges related to impaired driving, drug, and weapons offenses.

Kremmling Police Officer Bryson Hicks identified the vehicle as it entered the town, observed unsafe practices, and pulled the car over at the corner of Highway 40 and 3rd Street. Hicks identified indicators of marijuana use and possession, including accessible joints and marijuana paraphernalia.

Grand County Sheriff Brett Schroetlin arrived on scene and identified a gun case in the car, found to hold a loaded handgun with a prohibited 17-round magazine.

GC Sheriff’s Office K-9 pair Deputy Elthorp and Milo assisted with a vehicle search, turning
up large amounts of suspected controlled substances. In all, they found what appears to be about 2 grams of methamphetamine, 9 grams

of heroin, 90 grams of cocaine, 4 Tramadol pills, 233 Alprazolam pills, 1 Clonazepam pill, 52 hits of acid, and 5.79 pounds of marijuana. Evidence of intent to sell the drugs was also found in the form of measuring equipment and small bags.

Knopp, the sole occupant and driver of the vehicle was taken into custody without incident. He did not pass a roadside sobriety test and chose to take a blood draw at Middle Park Health. He faces multiple felony and misdemeanor charges, including possession and distribution; misdemeanor driving offenses; misdemeanor and felony weapon offenses, including carrying a weapon in the course of committing a felony; and traffic infractions.

Schroetlin lauded “the commitment of a citizen to keep our roadways safe, the investigative skills of our Officers/Deputies, and K9 Milo’s nose.” And Kremmling Interim Police Chief Annette Dopplick commented, “Officer Hicks is to be commended for his efforts in safely stopping the vehicle and coordinating a robust investigation with our law enforcement partners. It is a real force-multiplier when we work together.”

Knopp will appear in district court to be advised of charges on July 28.

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