Fact Check

Did a Seattle Woman Find Cocaine in a Crochet Kit?

News reports claimed that the woman got more than she bargained for at a Seattle thrift store in February 2021.

Published Feb 25, 2021

Experts make tests before the incineration of drugs at a military base in Pedro Brand, Santo Domingo province, Dominican Republic, on December 13, 2018. - Over 14 tons of drug -mainly cocaine, crack and marijuana- have been incinerated since January at the military base. (Photo by Erika SANTELICES / AFP)        (Photo credit should read ERIKA SANTELICES/AFP via Getty Images) (ERIKA SANTELICES/AFP via Getty Images)
Image Via ERIKA SANTELICES/AFP via Getty Images
Claim:
In February 2021, a woman found what turned out to be one kilogram — 2.2 pounds — of cocaine in a crochet kit she bought in Seattle.

In February 2021, several news outlets reported on an unusual crime story, writing that a woman in Seattle, Washington, had found a substantial quantity of cocaine buried inside a crochet kit she bought from a local thrift store.

On Feb. 24, Fox News published an article with the headline "Seattle woman finds 1 kilo of cocaine in crochet kit she bought at thrift shop, police say." The article stated that:

A Seattle woman got more than she bargained for when she bought a crochet kit at a thrift shop and discovered a kilogram of cocaine inside, authorities said. The woman purchased the kit to crochet animal hats around 3 p.m. Sunday in the city's Greenwood neighborhood, the Seattle Police Department said in a news release.

But when the crochet hobbyist opened the kit, she found a suspicious package that was encased in yellow rubber with "100%" written on the outside. The item also gave off an "odd odor," police said. The woman immediately called police, who seized the suspicious package and later confirmed it contained one kilogram, or 2.2 pounds, of cocaine.

Similar articles were published by KCPQ, KOMO, WREG, and The Hill

Those reports were accurate. On Feb. 22, Seattle police described the episode in a news release, as follows:

Sunday afternoon, a woman discovered a kilogram of narcotics within a packaged crochet kit in the Greenwood neighborhood.

Around 3:00pm, a woman purchased a kit to crochet animal hats at a business within the 6400 block of 8th Avenue Northwest. When she opened the kit, there was a suspicious heavy item encased in yellow rubber giving off an odd odor with 100% written on the outside. The woman immediately called 9-1-1.

Officers responded and took possession of the suspicious package. Police later confirmed the substance to be a kilogram of cocaine. The packaged was placed into evidence.

That statement erroneously described the store as being located in the Greenwood neighborhood of Seattle. In fact, the 6400 block of Eighth Avenue Northwest is in the Ballard neighborhood. Police also released the following photograph of the package that contained the cocaine:

The Goodwill thrift store effectively confirmed the woman had purchased the crochet kit there, in the following statement, which was provided to The Seattle Times:

“The safety of our customers and employees is our first priority and it is our policy is to keep hazardous, dangerous, or recalled materials away from our stores,” a Goodwill spokesperson said in an email. “We do our best to identify and remove those items if they are found. Part of our processes is to maintain an up-to-date list of all recalled products and we train employees to identify and spot check for any dangerous items and prevent them from being sold in our stores.

“We strive to comply with the letter and spirit of all regulations on the sale and resale of consumer products and we do not tolerate any known failures to comply with the law. It is also our practice to cooperate fully with local authorities in any investigation.”

Dan Mac Guill is a former writer for Snopes.

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