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The Department of Justice revealed on Friday that a Palmer couple was sentenced by U. S. District Court Judge Sharon Gleason for their part in an extensive conspiracy to bring in heroin and Methamphetamine to Alaska from Seattle and distribute the drugs in the Mat-Su area.
41-year-old Tod J. Rodolph and 36-year-old Jessica E. Hopkins previously pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Distribute and Possess with Intent to Distribute. Rodolph additionally pleaded Guilty to Possession of Firearms in Furtherance of Drug Trafficking Crimes.
Rodolph was sentenced to 12 years in prison and fined $30,000, Hopkins was sentenced to 78 months in prison.
Rodolph hit the Alaska State Trooper’s radar in January 2016 following the overdose death of a 17-year-old teen at Rodolph’s and Hopkins home. It was on January 9th that the teen, only identified by the initials A.F, was taking meth with a group of other teens in the garage at Rodolph’s house, that he began getting sick and showing signs of overdose.
When this occurred, the teens woke up Rodolph for help, but, Rodolph, because he did not want attention or the inevitable contact with authorities, did not seek medical help or take the teen to the hospital.
When the teen was ultimately taken to the hospital, he had already died.
That incident made law enforcement suspect that Rodolph was distributing drugs out of his home and an investigation was initiated. While investigators would never uncover evidence that the meth that killed the teen came from Rodolph, he was eventually caught with large amounts of heroin and meth.
Rodolph would admit to AST and DEA investigators that he had taken at least 20 flights to Washington state to buy drugs that he brought back to the Mat-Su area, each time bringing back two to five ounces. Rodolph also admitted to investigators that he kept firearms at his residence in order to protect himself and his drug operation from being robbed.
When search warrants were issued for Rodolph”s home, prosecutors say “numerous items of drug paraphernalia, heroin, methamphetamine, scales, and firearms – all which were in plain view and accessible to their 15-year-old daughter.”
As the investigation continued, Hopkins would admit to investigators that she was aware of Rodolph’s drug distribution activities and had helped facilitate drug transactions.
The estimated value of the drugs brought in by Rodolph is put at at least $624,000.