Convicted drug thief disputes case: ‘I was railroaded’

Posted 7/1/22

A Quilcene man was ordered to be held in Jefferson County Jail on $100,000 bail Thursday pending his sentencing on felony drug charges later this month.

Charles Eric Coulter was booked into jail …

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Convicted drug thief disputes case: ‘I was railroaded’


A Quilcene man was ordered to be held in Jefferson County Jail on $100,000 bail Thursday pending his sentencing on felony drug charges later this month.

Charles Eric Coulter was booked into jail June 8 following a missed court appearance the week before. He had pleaded guilty earlier this year to two counts of delivery of a controlled substance, heroin, in a school zone.

Coulter, 59, had been scheduled to appear in court June 3 but never showed up, prompting prosecutors to ask that a $100,000 warrant be issued for his arrest.


Coulter was arrested on felony drug charges — two counts of selling heroin — in June 2019.

His arrest came after the sheriff’s office used a confidential informant to buy drugs from Coulter three separate times in November and December of 2018, according to court documents.

One alleged transaction happened at Coulter’s home on Cemetery Road in Quilcene on
Nov. 21, 2018. That sale was for 1.59 grams for $80.

The second sale was at the East Quilcene Road near its intersection with McInnis Road in Quilcene on Nov. 29, 2018; 1.71 grams for $80.

The alleged third drug sale, Dec. 10, 2018 on Leland Valley Road near Leland Cutoff Road in Quilcene, was for 1.62 grams for $120.

The informant was searched for drugs and contraband before each drug purchase, according to court documents, and the informant was kept under surveillance as the drug buy was completed with cash provided by a detective with the sheriff’s office.

After the sale, the informant then turned over the suspected heroin that had just been purchased.

The informant was wearing a hidden transmitting and recording device during the drug buys.

The Washington State Patrol Crime Lab tested the heroin that had been purchased, and test results showed two of the drug buys were heroin, but that counterfeit drugs had been sold during the Nov. 29, 2018 purchase.

Authorities also noted that the three drug sales had been made in a school zone, within 1,000 feet of a bus stop.


During the June 3 hearing in Jefferson County Superior Court, Coulter’s attorney said Coulter had car trouble and couldn’t make the hearing.

Superior Court Judge Keith Harper signed an order for a $100,000 warrant, adding that Coulter’s record of appearing in court “is turning out to be pretty dismal.”

“And he’s not here,” Harper added.

The judge then said to those attending court via Zoom:
“Mr. Coulter, if you can hear me, I would suggest you turn yourself in to the jail.”

“And if you don’t do that and you remain out of custody and have to be arrested, I’m not going to be very impressed,” the judge said.


Last week’s hearing went off the rails as soon as it started.

“For the record, on the Zoom monitor, you’re Charles Eric Coulter?” Harper asked.

“I can’t take it, man. I can’t deal with this, man. I gotta get out of here, man!” Coulter yelled.

“OK. Are you Charles Coulter?” the judge asked again.

“Am I?” Coulter answered. “I don’t know who I am right now, man. I don’t feel much like myself, your honor.”

“Are you Charles Coulter?” Harper asked again.

“No sir. I don’t think I am,” Coulter said. “I don’t know who I am. I’m not myself right now.”

Harper tried to continue the proceeding over Coulter’s interruptions.

Coulter turned to a corrections officer standing near him, asking, “Who the hell are you?”

When Harper mentioned the arrest warrant that was issued for Coulter after he failed to show up in a court a week earlier, Coulter again interrupted.

“My truck was stuck in the woods,” he said. “It was stuck. I couldn’t get it out of gear.”

Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Tuppence Macintyre noted that Coulter had shown up for a pre-sentencing substance-abuse screening but added that a home-based drug program was not being recommended, and no facilities are currently accepting methadone clients.

Coulter yelled in disagreement over the video link from the jail and became increasingly animated, jumping up to quickly pace a few steps, then sitting back down on the jail bench, then throwing his head into his hands in his lap.

Macintyre asked sentencing in the case to be scheduled for Friday, June 17.

Coulter responded with a string of obscenities, adding finally, “I can’t deal with this at all.”

As discussions continued on the terms of his release, the outburst did not abate.

“Mr. Coulter, you are an extremely high risk simply to not show up to court when you are supposed to be here,” the judge said.

Harper reminded Coulter he had already pleaded guilty to two felony counts and was awaiting sentencing.

“That’s bull****,” Coulter responded. “That’s bull****!”

Harper announced sentencing was set for Friday, June 17.

Coulter continued to shout over the judge until the end of the hearing.

“You know what happened in that thing!” he shouted. 

“That kid was so dirty. That kid who ratted me out was so dirty! He did not follow his rules that you’re supposed to follow when he was doing that [expletive]! He gave me counterfeit money; he gave them counterfeit dope. I mean, c’mon! That was so dirty! That was bull****!”

The outburst went on.

“If it’s not on the record or anything, I have to say that. It had to be said,” Coulter continued.

“[Expletive]. I have gotten reamed on this [expletive]. I got reamed here, man,” Coulter said. “I got railroaded. Completely railroaded.”

“I can’t take it, man!” he continued to yell again and again before he was taken away by officers.


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