Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News)- A recent Rochester traffic stop uncovered evidence of drug sales. 

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That’s according to a criminal complaint filed Wednesday in Olmsted County Court. The charges say the stop was conducted on a vehicle with expired registration. 

Rochester Police pulled over the vehicle around 7:30 on Monday night.

The defendant in the case has a prior drug felony drug conviction and was a passenger in the vehicle stopped by police, according to the complaint. 

Expired Tabs Lead to Rochester Drug Sales Bust

The officer, who was on patrol, stopped the vehicle with expired tabs at the intersection of 16th St. and 1st Ave. Northeast. 


Four people were in the vehicle, all of whom have a history of drug use, and the driver was showing signs of drug impairment, the complaint says. 

The officer ordered the driver out of the vehicle and conducted a field sobriety test. The driver, who is not named in the complaint, was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of a controlled substance. 

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A K-9 was called to the scene to conduct an open-air sniff of the vehicle. The K9 pointed officers to a backpack being worn by 41-year-old Ian Robert Kenneth Cowden of Rochester, the complaint says. 

Police searched the backpack and found multiple baggies of suspected psilocybin mushrooms and two bags of substance that field-tested positive for methamphetamine, the court filing states. 

Cowden complaint. Olmsted County Court
Cowden complaint. Olmsted County Court

The suspected meth weighed 23.4 grams with packaging and the suspected mushrooms weighed 29.9 grams with packaging. The mushrooms did not produce a positive reaction when they were field tested, the charges say. 

The backpack also contained empty plastic bags and a digital scale. Cowden also had $2,571.05 in cash on him that was mostly made up of bills in smaller denominations, the complaint says. 

Cowden complaint. Olmsted County Court
Cowden complaint. Olmsted County Court

Cowden told police the backpack and its contents were his and said he was with the individuals in the vehicle to sell them marijuana, the charges say. Cowden said the meth was fake and the mushrooms were for personal use. 

The complaint does not say whether or not marijuana was in the vehicle. Cowden was charged Wednesday with a felony count of first-degree drug sales and a felony third-degree drug possession charge. 

He was released without bail. Court records indicate Cowden was convicted of fifth-degree felony drug possession in Olmsted County in 2014. 

Cowden is due back in court next month.

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