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Lacey Cops Arrest Two After Mailbox Money Drop

Pair being held on variety of charges

Ashley Frank (Photo: Ocean County Jail)
Ashley Frank (Photo: Ocean County Jail)
A text message instructing a relative to leave money in a Forked River mailbox for pickup led to the arrest of two local residents.

Lacey officers staked out a mailbox on Weehawken Avenue after a resident there, Ashley Frank, 21, had sent a text message to a relative requesting $200 be placed in a mailbox, purportedly so she could be freed from being held against her will, police said.

Officers staked out the mailbox and identified the driver of a vehicle, Raymond Ouellette, 28, of Beachwood, was picking up the money that had eventually been left. Frank, according to Ouellette, police said, was staying at a house on Nautilus Boulevard at the time, where police eventually found her.

Ouellette said he was instructed by Frank to pick up the money.

Upon seeing officers pull up, Frank fled from the front yard of the Nautilus Boulevard residence to the inside of the house, where she was eventually arrested, according to police.

She was taken into custody on a "no bail" warrant from the Ocean County Sheriff's Department as well as for possession of two wax folds of heroin, which were discovered during a post-arrest search, police said.

Frank was being held, according to jail records, on charges of manufacturing or distributing cocaine.

While at the scene, officers located 22-year-old Brittani Koppenjan of Point Pleasant Beach, who was arrested on a $10,000 Ocean County Sheriff’s Department warrant and an active $500 Toms River Township warrant, police said.

Koppenjan was arrested and transported to Lacey Police headquarters where she was processed and turned over to the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department for commitment to the Ocean County Jail.

According to jail records, Koppenjan was being held on charges of drug possession and possession with intent to use or sell hypodermic syringes.
stephen james January 08, 2014 at 12:24 PM
You people make me laugh, arm chair quarter backs, i guess you dont see between the lines of miss spelling! just for you yates! You should live on a house boat in the middle of the bay so no one steals your money! Tool !!!
Chris L January 08, 2014 at 12:28 PM
@Robert yates. WE MEET AGAIN YATES! lol but honestly while i see your point i think we need to look at drugs differently. You do have a point that the approach on the war on drugs is pointless but i dont think its completely futile. I think the problem is that we have to look at drugs rationally. Which drugs are harmful to a person? Which ones tend to harm others? For example, most people dont steal to get their hands on mushrooms. so if you find someone doing mushrooms in their own house and not causing a problem, then let them be. Now heroine rarely ends nicely. It often leads to theft, overdose, and harming others in the search for the drug. So that should be illegal still. Also traveling with drugs isnt the best idea. While we can criticize all we want about what drugs should or shouldnt be legal, we have to deal with the reality of what drugs are and arent legal. The community values are suppose to set the laws and i think most of lacey would agree that these girls need to spend time in jail
Isheet Mipants January 08, 2014 at 12:33 PM
Its everybody's business when people use illegal drugs period.The problem is the scumbags who sell it are not getting punished enough. When people sell illegal drugs its the same as selling guns , the only difference is the people (mostly kids) whom buy these types of guns are the ones who already have the bullets.Then instead of shooting other people they shoot themselves.This is still murder and the drug dealers should be charged as murderers.
Chris L January 08, 2014 at 12:44 PM
tu can chu.... thats is insane. want to arrest someone for selling drugs that can kill you? see your doctor. the kids arent the only ones doing drugs in this town. the adults are making it for them. Most of the drug abuse in this town starts with pills that their dr.s put them on. once those run out, they want anything cheap. Selling drugs is no where close to selling guns.
hardesthit January 08, 2014 at 12:48 PM
While I completely agree with @Yates (as usual), I also see the need for a community center in our town. The lack of activities, especially this time of year is sad. Teens with idle time and little or no parental supervision will tend to do stupid things. I had the pleasure of visiting the Woodbridge community center recently, I didn't want to leave.I do believe this should be privately funded though, I would donate.
Robert Yates January 08, 2014 at 02:01 PM
@stephen james: why do you feel the need to call me names? Did you graduate from kindergarten? Isn't that the grade level where you learn it is not nice to call people names. Your other point is a very interesting one. It would solve the larceny problem via property taxes, but I am pretty sure most of the other confiscatory taxes would still apply. I do not think you would have to be in the middle of the bay either. I think a mere boat slip would suffice. @Chris L: I think the theft stems more from the fact that the user does not have the money than from the nature of the drug. We do not read about Tom Sizemore stealing to get his heroin fix. But I do see your point regarding the differing levels of danger associated with each drug. From a principle perspective, it does not matter how dangerous the drug is to the user, but I see your point from a practical perspective. @Tu can Chu: selling drugs is not murder; neither is selling guns. Suicide is not murder. Overdosing is generally not suicide as it lacks intent. @tr: a privately funded and owned community center is a fine idea. I hope I did not suggest that I would be capable of leading anyone in the topics I suggested. They just struck me as being good alternatives to drugs, though I could recommend some good books or movies. @Hardesthit: you make a great point when you say the center is a particularly good idea in light of the little to no parental supervision that sadly prevails. Much of this goes back to taxes. If the burden was not so severe, 2 incomes may not be as readily required and more attention could be provided to children.
hardesthit January 08, 2014 at 03:19 PM
@Yates, while I agree that our tax burden is completely out of control, and often spent on things that citizen should not be taxed for, unfortunately I do not believe that lowering it, even significantly, will result in a substantial increase in one income families. In today's society I believe most people would use the money for frivolous things. Note, I am fine with people spending their money on whatever they want, just pointing it out.
Joe Quinn January 08, 2014 at 06:42 PM
I feel terrible for one of these girls, Ive known the family for quite some time and even though this girl has had a problem for years now,rehab just doesnt seem to work for her, not sure if its because she enjoys drugs or just doesnt want anything out of life other then drugs, I dont understand that kind of thinking.From what I read, she will be staying in jail and maybe thats what she needs, then again maybe not because shes been there before.Some people you just cant help and its a damn shame because like I said before, I know the family and they are good people.......
Robert Yates January 09, 2014 at 08:50 AM
@Hardesthit: sadly, you are probably right. But I think one the reasons people are so willy nilly with their money is because they falsely believe there will always be a safety net. There is no need to really save for retirement because there is SS and Medicare. There is no need to save for college, because low interest loans flow like water. Heck, even if I lose my job, I get 2 years of unemployment and food stamps and housing assistance and whatever else is out there. It is government policies (et al most assuredly) that encourage irresponsibility and reliance, rather than industriousness and thrifty spending habits. Government has tried for 100 years now to fix societies ills and they have failed monumentally. It is time for them to get out of the way. @Joe Quinn: check out the following movie clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfGmV-el44k....if you have not already seen the whole thing, it is well worth the watch; a very good movie.
Joe Stewart January 09, 2014 at 09:11 AM
1st of all Yates - Your an idiot - if the drug problem wasn't at least curtailed a bit, they would steal from you too...hope they do, this may change your tune. For all of you that think the drug problem is worst than when you were young...stop fooling yourself. The technology and the war against these drugs have gotten better and more aggrsssive. Wait...maybe you all forgot the 60's??? The bottom line is if you don't hear about it, your police department isn't doing enough! Thank you LPD for a great job. I love reading about this becuase it means that we are fighting it, not that our town is headed in the direction of Jersey City or Newark.
Robert Yates January 09, 2014 at 09:28 AM
@Joe Stewart: it looks like you need to go back to kindergarten too. Don't you know it is not nice to call people names? Simply because you say the drug problem has abated does not make it a fact. Cite some statistics. Here is a quick link: http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/nationwide-trends....first line reads as follows: "Illicit drug use in America has been increasing." And this is a government website. You appear to be uninformed (making false statements of fact) and vindictive (hoping that I become a victim of theft). And the idea that Lacey is going to become like Newark is patently absurd.
grace January 09, 2014 at 09:30 AM
first of all @ joe stewart there is no need to call @ yates an idiot..
Joe Stewart January 09, 2014 at 09:34 AM
Hey, Lacey patch left out an important part of the article. This house was 311 Nautilus...the home of drug dealer Ralph Monoco......see link. How about the close down the heroin house! http://lacey.patch.com/groups/police-and-fire/p/suspected-drug-deal-at-lacey-library-leads-to-multiple-arrests
Joe Stewart January 09, 2014 at 09:39 AM
Get over it! Figures lie and liars figure. Statistics are only as good as the sample size and those that actually perform the analysis. The media will pick up on everything that is controversial. I'm sorry if I offended you Grace, but I get upset when people make stupid comments like you can't do anything about the drug problem....so give up? Could you imagine what the world would be like if we did? There are many house robberies in Lacey right now. With his logic...we should all keep our doors unlocked...maybe even leave the robbers milk and cookies.
grace January 09, 2014 at 09:43 AM
@joe thanks for the monoco link....wonder if its his or he lives with parents...maybe a law can take the home if dealing etc done from it like the seize your car thing
Robert Yates January 09, 2014 at 09:48 AM
Thank you @grace. Another thing @JS: I believe you meant to say: "you're (aka "you are") an idiot."
hardesthit January 09, 2014 at 11:13 AM
@Joe, if you're going to call someone a moron in writing, you should be more careful with your grammar .
Robert Yates January 09, 2014 at 11:31 AM
@Joe Stewart: you do not read very carefully, do you? My position is that drugs should be legal primarily because I should have to right to ingest whatever I choose. That is as long as I am not hurting other people or other people's property, it is none of your business. I should be free to do as I please. Secondarily, the law enforcement efforts are futile and counterproductive. It is nuts to do the same thing over and over when it does not work. Moreover, I have never once suggested that we give up. I think there are hundreds of ways to make in roads (some of which have been mentioned on this thread). I just think law enforcement efforts are contrary to freedom; they are funded by stolen money; and they do not work. This is not a receipt for success. But continue advocating for public theft, useless effort and violations of freedom, especially if it helps you sleep well at night. But don't expect the victims of that advocacy to remain quiet.
JAKE2 January 09, 2014 at 12:34 PM
There are alot of good kids from good families getting wrapped up in this drug problem. Recovery takes alot of willpower on the addicts part. These girls don't want to be this way. They just can't get out ! To get out. They need to change. People places. Things. !!!! They have to get on a mind set that they want to change. It takes about one year for their brain chemistry to readjust. So the physical need stays for awhile. It can be done with hard work and a support system !!!! Rehab will give them the tools. Addicts need to use those tools. And their support system ! Sometimes jail will wake them up when they get sick and tired of the lifestyle. Prevention is the best way to prevent it from starting in the first place !!!! Education is the key !!!!!
hardesthit January 09, 2014 at 12:47 PM
@Jake2, you seem to know a lot about recovery, if you had a problem and are now in recovery , good work. I must say though, in your post you state "These girls do no want to be this way". Do you know them ? If you don't , you shouldn't assume, they don't look too upset in the pictures.
JAKE2 January 09, 2014 at 01:10 PM
And they def . Cannot live in Lacey anymore !!!! Or they will relapse everything they come back here !!!!
JAKE2 January 09, 2014 at 01:10 PM
Every time they come back !
Robert Yates January 09, 2014 at 01:39 PM
@Jake2: you are right that the crux of the solution is education, but it must be a full education. Whether you believe it or not, everyone in this day and age knows that drugs are generally speaking bad for you. There may be some exceptions like marijuana (for anxiety and pain) or morphine (for severe pain) but by and large, everyone knows drugs will lead you down a bad path. DARE and other programs that foucs on the drug and what it can do are only marginally helpful. Kids today must grow up learning about personal responsiblity (and the fact that there are consequences for one's actions); self respect; respect for others; one's duty to work hard and honestly; to help a neighbor; to appreciate something beautiful; and to seek things and ideas that are constructive, beautiful and true. I know @tr likes to mock these lists, but these are the things that will help people choose the right path. Will they always work? Of course not. "A River Runs Through It" is a good testement to that. But when a society jettisons the things that are good, they will be more likely to cling to false notions. This is where we find ourselves today. So yes, education is the key, but it has to happen earl; largely at home; and it must focus on a way of life, not merely the procedural and physical characteristics of a mushroom. This is the job of parents, relatives, friends, and churches; not police officers and not public schools.
JAKE2 January 09, 2014 at 04:39 PM
First of all I am not an addict. I have educated myself more than you will ever know. I had too !!!! Secondly I am a high school teacher ! In a large school. , in Toms river ! I have been teaching now 32 years ! What everyone doesn't get. A brain isn't fully matured until 25. Young adults do not reason like an adult over 25. It's not an excuse it's fact. So young adults do not think of consequences like we do '. They are impulsive ! I am a health and phys Ed teacher. I have the opportunity to educate my students on this epidemic. They are clueless. I ask them. Have your parents talked to you about this issue. I get 2 hands raised out of 30 kids !!! I teach 10 th grade. I ask them. Have your teachers from the past , last year. Middle school teachers addressed this issue with you. Again maybe 5 hands out of 30 raise their hands. It gets me mad. The education is poor !!! We're lacking. When I tell them of my experience with addiction, Not myself. They are shocked of what I tell them will happen if they try this stuff. (Drugs ). I have been at many rehabs. Believe me. They hate themselves. Half prescribed from doctors and got addicted. And half from trying it. Not knowing of the outcome. Before they could say boo. They were addicted ! It has to be stopped before the student. Young adult even try s it !!!! It could already be to late. Believe me they don't like who they are. The question is are they willing and wanting the sober life bad enough to work at it !!!! Last thing. If they can't best the addiction before 25. It will be much harder to stop. All these kids are under 25. There is hope !!!
JAKE2 January 09, 2014 at 04:44 PM
And Robert Yates. Your 100 % correct !!!! (-:
JAKE2 January 09, 2014 at 04:45 PM
It better start soon. Or we're gonna loose more of our youth !
JAKE2 January 09, 2014 at 04:51 PM
Lose. Sorry
JAKE2 January 09, 2014 at 05:59 PM
And at hardshit. When they are in a full blow out addiction. That is how they will look. They don't care about anything but their drugs. It's not them !
Amy January 10, 2014 at 08:14 AM
This article has nothing to do with grammar. Someone mentioned a community center geared towards giving the kids in town a place to go with something to do…well we see how well that worked out with the skate park..how many times has that been broken into? Sad, and by sad I mean pathetic, that a young girl bilked her own mother out of money for drugs. Some things will never change unless the prosecutors get on board. The same names on patch every time I log on…that's a problem. p.s. why not try to stay on point when commenting on here..why all of the personal attacks?
Linny January 10, 2014 at 08:42 AM
You are all acting like a bunch of babies.. grow up and speak like adults.

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