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Latest county jail death may be tied to drug smuggling by inmates

EVERETT — County jail staff found an inmate unresponsive in his cell Wednesday, Oct. 26, and attempts to resuscitate the Everett man were unsuccessful.
He was David Koeppen, 38. The sheriff’s office is treating his death in the jail as a homicide from a controlled substance.
He was being detained for a February homicide in Arlington. Koeppen and another man broke into a husband and wife’s motorhome Feb. 7 bearing pistols. Koeppen decided to shoot the husband multiple times when the husband began speaking up, court reports say. He died from his gunshot wounds Feb. 11.
Koeppen’s jury trial had been scheduled for next spring.
Koeppen was from Florida, but was living in a condominium off of 112th Street SE.
At the jail, every inmate in the same housing module was strip-searched and submitted to a urinalysis. One inmate was transported to jail booking for a body scan, which showed an anomaly. The sheriff’s office said that inmate removed a bag of drugs from his rectum which contained approximately 10 grams of presumptive fentanyl.
Some inmates have been smuggling fentanyl powder into the jail. Its smuggled with baggies. Its presence has caused overdoses by unwitting inmates sharing the same space. The worst instance was in May when seven inmates required hospitalization.
“We remain unwavering in our commitment to ensuring a safe, secure, and humane facility, and we will take every possible measure to prevent the introduction of drugs into the jail,” Sheriff Adam Fortney said in a press release.
The Snohomish County Jail is currently in the process of obtaining a full-time drug detection K-9 dog, the sheriff’s office said.
In September, two inmates died on separate days. They were aged 38 and 42. The Herald reported the 42-year-old died from natural causes.



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