UHP K-9 Titan intercepts half a million dollars’ worth of heroin on I-15

ST. GEORGE — A Colorado couple traveling through Washington County was arrested Saturday on second-degree felony charges of drug distribution after a trooper and his K-9 counterpart discovered four pounds of heroin concealed in the couple’s vehicle during a traffic stop on Interstate 15.

heroin
Adriana Acosta, of Pueblo, Colorado, booking photo posted Feb. 6, 2016 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

Just before midnight Saturday, a Utah Highway Patrol trooper initiated a traffic stop on a blue passenger car on northbound I-15 near milepost 6.5 for a traffic violation, according to a probable cause statement filed by the Highway Patrol in support of the arrests.

The trooper talked with the driver, identified as Adriana Acosta, and her passenger, identified as 24-year-old Francisco Robles, both of Pueblo, Colorado. When Acosta told the trooper she didn’t have a driver’s license, the report stated, the trooper asked her to come to his patrol car while he ran her information.

As the trooper was filling out a citation, he engaged Acosta in conversation and asked her about her trip.

“She stated they left from Pueblo on (Friday) and wanted to go to Vegas to get away and play slots,” the trooper wrote in the statement. “I asked why the short turn around in the trip. She stated she needed to get back to Colorado to pick her son up from her ex-boyfriend. She stated she was unemployed and her husband in the vehicle with her had been unemployed for a few months … .“

The trooper asked Acosta how she was paying for her trip to Las Vegas since the two were unemployed, the report stated, and she told him they were using money they had received from their tax refund.

heroin
Francisco Robles, of Pueblo, Colorado, booking photo posted Feb. 6, 2016 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

The trooper then questioned Robles who told him a similar story. However, the trooper said he felt the stories seemed rehearsed.

Titan, a Utah Highway Patrol narcotics K-9, was then deployed around the exterior of the vehicle and indicated on the vehicle’s front right corner to the presence of drugs, according to the report. A hand search of the vehicle revealed four pounds of heroin stuffed inside the dash behind the glove box in four separate vacuumed-sealed packages.

With heroin selling for $6,000 to $8,000 an ounce, authorities estimate the confiscated heroin to be worth between $384,000 and $512,000.

Acosta and Robles were both arrested and booked into the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility.

Acosta was charged with second-degree felony drug distribution, class B misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia and two infractions for a signal violation and not obtaining a valid driver’s license.

Robles was charged with second-degree felony drug distribution and class B misdemeanor for possession of drug paraphernalia.

The couple made their initial court appearance Monday afternoon in 5th District Court.

Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.

Email: kscott@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

 

 

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14 Comments

  • Bowlinggreen123 February 8, 2016 at 7:41 pm

    Death penalty for these transporters? Make it a more severe penalty and maybe they will think twice about it. It is a revolving door for these type of people.
    Just look at the bookings page, the same people over and over again.

    • .... February 9, 2016 at 8:37 am

      They’ll both get probation and community service and a fine for being stupid. the state puts pressure on courts to stop locking people up because of cost. don’t blame the court system

  • ladybugavenger February 8, 2016 at 7:45 pm

    That’ll teach them

    • .... February 9, 2016 at 8:43 am

      no it won’t ! because when they get out they’ll start over where they left off . just like any other drug dealer

      • ladybugavenger February 9, 2016 at 2:08 pm

        That’s the truth

  • SteveSGU February 9, 2016 at 4:55 am

    So glad every time our highway patrolmen and police officers catch criminals like this. Good job!

    • .... February 9, 2016 at 8:47 am

      I’m glad to see it happen too . but this won’t change anything. there will be another load of drugs in another car today and tomorrow and most of them pass by and go on about their business. The war on drugs is a joke

  • mmsandie February 9, 2016 at 7:56 am

    State and local police do a great job.. Rte 15 is a major route for this type of business.. How. Ouild they say they were gambling and both were unemployed..??? Great job. And Titan looks great in his best… MMa

  • Mean Momma February 9, 2016 at 9:21 am

    That’s a good boy Titan!

    • .... February 9, 2016 at 9:16 pm

      You steel hear meen mommu ?

  • sagemoon February 9, 2016 at 9:43 am

    Good boy, Titan! I like to see heroin taken off the streets.

    • .... February 9, 2016 at 10:05 am

      That will never happen sage. as long as the demand is there so is the supply

      • sagemoon February 10, 2016 at 11:21 am

        Sometimes I think the government really doesn’t care about the average U.S. citizen. They will go to war in the middle east so our corporations can sell oil and make money off the people but won’t go to war in Mexico to take down the dang cartels to save American lives. I hate heroin. If people want to continue this war against drugs, take it to the source rather than punishing the poor suckers who get addicted. American priorities are so messed up.

  • Ron February 9, 2016 at 1:02 pm

    Just a couple of unlicensed Pharmacists. Trying to get to their business in either Cali or Vegas. Hope they get the book thrown at them.

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