TOLEDO — A police officer performing seatbelt patrol on Highway 20 last Saturday uncovered a car transporting methamphetamine, heroin and pills.
According to an affidavit of probable cause filed Monday in Lincoln County Circuit Court, a Toledo police officer patrolling Highway 20 near Dundon Road under a seatbelt enforcement grant on Aug. 28 observed the backseat passenger in a silver Toyota Camry not wearing a safety restraint.
The officer attempted a traffic stop but was separated from the suspect vehicle by several cars, so he followed until the Camry pulled into the parking lot of the JC Market, where he was joined by another officer. The backseat passenger quickly left the car and walked into the market, the affidavit reads, and the officer recognized the front seat passenger as having a warrant for his arrest, which he verified through dispatch. This officer asked the driver for her name, and she identified herself as Kimmia Kay Whittlinger, 27, of Lincoln City. The officer learned through dispatch that she was on felony probation for first-degree robbery.
The officer asked Whittlinger who the passenger was who’d walked in the store, and she told him it was Tristan Conner Smith, 23, of Newport. Because both passengers were known to be involved with drugs, the officer wrote, he asked Whittlinger about the last time she’d used, and she admitted to using methamphetamine four days prior. She granted permission for police to search her car. In the back seat, officers found a black case containing a meth pipe with a “usable quantity,” as well as Xanax pills, according to the affidavit, and Whittlinger told police that they belonged to Smith.
Smith was detained and placed in handcuffs upon exiting the store empty-handed, and he initially denied ownership of the drugs. When told he’d been fingered by Whittlinger, he admitted they were his and told police there were more drugs and paraphernalia located in a fanny pack inside the car. Police searched the pack and found a working digital scale with heroin on it, baggies of methamphetamine, multiple pieces of tin foil with heroin on them, several needles and other containers with heroin residue, according to the affidavit. Smith denied selling narcotics but “admitted he has given or distributed Xanax and meth” and said he uses the scale for weighing marijuana and meth. The officer wrote in the affidavit, “I told Tristan there is heroin on his scale. Tristan’s reply was, ‘yes.”
According to the affidavit, Whittlinger told police she knew Smith sold methamphetamine and heroin, and she has purchased them from him herself. A search of her phone, to which she consented, revealed conversations with Smith discussing drug transactions, and Whittlinger said she’d acted as a “middleman” for him.
The front seat passenger, Adam Rourke, 39, of Lincoln City, was cited on warrants for methamphetamine possession and providing false information, and released with a mandatory court appearance (court records indicate he failed to appear for a hearing scheduled Sept. 3). Meanwhile, according to the affidavit, Whittlinger’s probation officer searched her hotel room and located pills in a nightstand. Police identified them as methylphenidate, brand name Ritalin, a Schedule II controlled substance. Whittlinger, who’d already admitted to having a methamphetamine pipe in her purse, was told she would be charged for the pills, as well. She and Smith were transported to Lincoln County Jail.
Smith was granted conditional release on Monday, according to court records. He is charged with delivery of heroin, delivery of methamphetamine, manufacture/delivery of a Schedule IV controlled substance, possession of heroin, possession of methamphetamine and possession of a Schedule IV controlled substance.
Whittlinger remains incarcerated in Lincoln County Jail. She was originally charged with felony criminal conspiracy, as well as two misdemeanor drug possession charges, but court records indicate the district attorney did not pursue the felony count.