A California man wanted on nationwide warrants was arrested in the La Pine area Monday, allegedly in possession of three garbage bags full of stolen mail.
Central Oregon Drug Enforcement (CODE) said the arrest of Jason Douglas Smith, 39, of El Monte, Calif., started with a traffic stop on Sunday night. CODE says that it was learned after the fact that Smith had provided a false name and identification. An investigation was launched to learn who he really was.
The ensuing investigation also led law enforcement to believe Smith had been in possession of controlled substances and a gun, CODE said.
Once they determined Smith’s true identity, CODE said it learned there were two warrants for him out of California for a being a parole/probation fugitive and for possession of dangerous drugs.
Smith was pulled over in a Chevrolet Malibu Monday and arrested without incident, CODE said. A woman in the car was released.
It was during a search of the car, CODE said, that detectives found the stolen mail, which included newly issued credit cards, identification cards, checks, and parcels from retailers. Methamphetamine was also allegedly found.
CODE said the investigation determined that Smith was visiting family in La Pine. It’s alleged that the stolen mail was from Weed, Calif., and from neighbors of Smith’s relative on Meadow Road.
The mail was sent to the U.S. Postal Service, which is working to deliver the mail to its rightful owners.
CODE said Smith was taken to Deschutes County Jail on charges of mail theft, false information to a police officer and the two out-of-state warrants.