South Sound News

4 student inmates arrested in plan to bring fentanyl into juvenile facility

CHEHALIS, Wash. — The overdose and near-death of a 17-year-old at the Green Hill School juvenile rehabilitation facility in Chehalis led to the arrest of four other student inmates who police say planned to or had already distributed fentanyl at the facility.

All four men were arrested at the Green Hill School in December and January.

Green Hill School in Chehalis is a medium/maximum security fenced facility that provides older males sentenced to juvenile rehabilitation treatment with education and vocational training,” according to the Washington State Department of Children, Youth & Families.

Police said an investigation began after a 17-year-old boy was found unresponsive in his cell at Green Hill. He was taken to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, where it was determined he had overdosed on fentanyl while at the facility.

Chehalis police, Green Hill staff, and members of the Joint Narcotics Enforcement Team worked together to investigate the source of the drugs that nearly killed the inmate, according to a news release from JNET and Centralia police.

On Dec. 1, 2022, JNET members intercepted nearly 1,100 fentanyl-laced pills that investigators said were destined for student inmates at Green Hill School. Investigators said most of the pills were blue with “M” and “30″ printed on opposing sides. A small number of the confiscated pills were pink and imprinted with “M” and “15.”

Police said three student inmates were identified to be involved in a plan to bring fentanyl into the school. A 23-year-old from Kent, a 21-year-old from Snoqualmie, and a 20-year-old from Olympia were arrested at the school and taken to the Lewis County Jail.

As JNET’s investigation continued, a fourth student inmate was identified who was believed to have been involved in distributing fentanyl inside Green Hill and was directly involved in the 17-year-old inmate’s overdose, according to the news release.

On Jan. 18, a 22-year-old Auburn man was arrested at Green Hill on suspicion of unlawful delivery of a controlled substance to a minor. He was booked into the Lewis County Jail.

JNET includes members of the Centralia and Chehalis police departments, the Washington State Department of Corrections, and the Drug Enforcement Administration.