Alert Officers Nab Alleged Drug Traffickers



The following media release is the combined efforts of the Drug Task Force, consisting of Prowers, Kiowa, Cheyenne, and Baca Counties’ Sheriffs Offices, as well as an agreement to assist Bent County Sheriff’s Office in narcotics investigations, in all the jurisdictions listed.

At approximately 1730 hours, on Tuesday, 5-3-16, Prowers County and Cheyenne County Sergeants were returning from Pueblo, CO. They observed what they believed to be narcotic activity heading into Bent County, Colorado. They contacted the on-duty Bent County Deputy and advised of the information. The investigation continued on into Prowers County, where the on-duty Prowers County Deputy, located two other vehicles, believed to be involved.

The Prowers Deputy attempted to gather license information for intelligence purposes, when the two vehicles, a sedan and a jeep, left the area. The two vehicles pulled into Ports to Plains Truck Stop and hid in between the semi-trucks at that location. After a voluntary contact, the two drivers left, telling the deputy they were heading to Kansas. They drove west towards Bent County, not east towards Kansas. The information was forwarded back to the on-duty Bent Deputies. The Prowers County Undersheriff and a Sergeant responded back to Bent County.

Bent County stopped the jeep for speeding 73 MPH in a 65 MPH zone. Consent was given to search the vehicle. Methamphetamine was located in the vehicle; the driver was identified as Austin Koester, 21 YOA. The sedan continued to circle the area, which is often an officer safety issue when drugs are being trafficked. The sedan was contacted as well. The driver of the sedan was not able to provide any identification and was giving the deputies a fictitious name. An investigation into the identity of the driver revealed he was Joey Terrazas-Garcia, 20 YOA, wanted on warrants out of Garden City, KS, for attempted 2nd Degree Murder and an assault.

Search warrants were obtained for the vehicles and yielded $11,000 in cash hidden in the jeep, and an estimated $3,000 (approx. 24 grams) of Methamphetamine, between the two vehicles. Both subjects were arrested and charged with Possession and Distribution of Schedule II Controlled Substance (Meth) and Terrazas-Garcia was also charged with Criminal Impersonation as well as held on the Kansas warrant(s).


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