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Weapons And $40,000 Found At Sioux Falls Drug Bust

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Police say 27-year-old Charles Elias Poppen had more than three pounds of pot in his apartment Tuesday night. But it wasn't the amount of drugs that surprised police most, rather what police found with the drugs.

Poppen was arrested on charges of possession of marijuana with intent to sell, along with other charges. The Sioux Falls Area Drug Task Force set up controlled buys that led to the seizure of more than three pounds of pot. The task force also found a shotgun with plenty of ammo and a bullet-proof vest.     

“The fact that that he had a shotgun and quite a bit of ammunition as well as a bullet resistant vest. Those are things that we don't necessarily need in the hands of drug dealers,” said Officer Sam Clemens.

Police also found a large amount of cash.

“We’ve seen more than that, but when we see $40,000 cash, that goes along with it. That is pretty significant,” said Clemons.
“Very surprised about that part of it,” that’s what one man who lives in the neighborhood had to say about the usually quiet area, an area that's also close to many kids," said James Hayes, who lives near Poppen's apartment.

Police say Charles Poppen operated his drug scheme right around the block from a pre-school.

“One of the things detectives are going to be looking at today is they’re going to find out if that falls in with the feet distance wise of being in a school safety zone or drug free zone,” said Clemens.

The drug bust in the small apartment building at 3309 E. 28th Street may not be the largest to ever happen in Sioux Falls, but police say they're happy that more weed is off the streets.   

Sioux Falls police said that Poppen also had baggies and scales. The task force started their controlled buys about a week ago. Poppen's next court appearance is scheduled for Sept. 15 in Minnehaha County.
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