Two Illinois men will forfeit over $20,000 seized after a Yellowstone ranger found marijuana in the pair’s car following a traffic stop.
The incident occurred in July but was not reported until September 2017, when the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Wyoming filed a civil complaint seeking the money. The Office alleged the money was going to be used to purchase marijuana in Oregon for resale in Illinois.
Both men were allowed to dispute the forfeiture in Wyoming federal district court, but according to the Billings Gazette, both men failed to file a claim before the deadline; they were informed the government would keep the money.
Jacob Dotson and Dustin Alvis were stopped by National Park Service Ranger Brad Jones in mid-July 2017 near the Trout Lake Trailhead after Jones witnessed the pair speeding. They were traveling 61 mph, while the speed limit in Yellowstone is 45 mph.
After stopping the men, Jones reportedly smelled marijuana, which prompted a search that yielded various drug paraphernalia. A further search yielded $20,337 in cash.
The pair plead guilty to misdemeanor charges July 11, 2017 and, after spending a few days at the Yellowstone Justice Center, were ordered to pay $1,025 in fines. Both men were given five years unsupervised probation and, further, are banned from Yellowstone National Park during that time.
We previously reported the forfeited money would likely go toward Yellowstone law enforcement.