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Windom couple charged with dealing drugs

WINDOM -- A Windom couple was arrested last week after authorities removed more than one-third of a pound of cocaine from their home.

The complaint states Gilberto Adame Ibarra, 29, and Rufina Alejandra Rodriguez Vargas, 30, both of Windom, are charged with first-degree sale of drugs and first-degree possession of drugs in Cottonwood County District Court.

With a search warrant in hand, authorities entered a house on Fifth Street after announcing their presence. They located Ibarra and a 3-year-old child in the residence.

The Cottonwood County K-9 Unit was deployed, and the dog started alerting to drug presence in several places. Shortly afterward, Vargas drove up to the house and started asking questions.

In one bedroom, inside a plastic container for moist wipes, an officer found three baggies of a white powder and one baggy of a white crystal. One of the bags of powder was in the shape of a brick and weighed 149.8 grams. It tested positive for cocaine, along with the other two baggies, for a total weight of 169.57 grams. The baggy with white crystal tested positive for meth, with a weight of 15.68 grams.

Also located were several empty baggies, some glass pipes and a purple glass bong with marijuana odor. In a closet, authorities found aluminum foil, a box of baking soda and a cup of water -- used for changing cocaine into crack cocaine. More than $1,600 in cash was also seized from the closet.

From training and experience, the officer was aware the amounts of both cocaine and meth are more than needed for personal use.

During an interview, Vargas allegedly confirmed she resided at the house and admitted to using cocaine and meth. She said she used to smoke crack cocaine, but quit. She confirmed the bedroom where the drugs were found was where she and Ibarra sleep, but denied any knowledge of the drugs. Vargas said there was a woman at the residence the night before who had brought the meth.

With the help of an interpreter, authorities attempted to interview Ibarra. He asked if Vargas was also in trouble, and when told she was, asked why she was in trouble when it was him who had the problem. He commented he did not know why he was in trouble because he does not always live there, but after signing a waiver, declined to speak any further.

Each charge carries a maximum penalty of 30 years incarceration and/or a $1 million fine.