Billings man charged for meth-laced coffee

2012-02-13T17:15:00Z 2014-08-25T11:53:54Z Billings man charged for meth-laced coffeeBy GREG TUTTLE gtuttle@billingsgazette.com The Billings Gazette
February 13, 2012 5:15 pm  • 

A Billings man accused of putting methamphetamine into the coffee at a tax business was charged Monday in Justice Court with a single count of felony criminal endangerment.

Craig Charles Benedict, 34, appeared before Judge Larry Herman by video from the county jail. Benedict responded with a sharp “sir, yes, sir” to the judge’s questions about whether he understood his rights and had received a copy of the charging document.

Herman set bond at $10,000 and ordered Benedict to appear for arraignment in District Court on Feb. 21.

Benedict is accused of putting methamphetamine in coffee that was consumed by as many as 11 people, including employees and customers, at Laser 1040 on Grand Avenue.

Prosecutors say Benedict was angry that another employee had demanded that he submit to a drug test at the business owned by his mother.

Court records state that video from a surveillance camera shows Benedict entering the business at about 10 p.m. on Feb. 7. Benedict covered one camera with a piece of paper, but a second camera shows him hanging a firearm target on an employee’s office door and “flipping the bird” to the camera, court records state.

Police were called to the business at about 12:50 p.m. the next day by an employee who said Benedict had bragged to his mother about pulling a prank at the office that included “spiking” the office coffee with methamphetamine. Benedict also allegedly told his former girlfriend that he put a half-gram of the drug into the large electric coffee maker.

An employee said she drank the coffee that morning and felt “unusually jittery.” Another employee, who said she was a recovering drug addict, said she drank the coffee and “recalled the physical effects of the drug on her system from her past use ... though much less intense,” court records state.

Benedict was arrested later that day.

RiverStone Health, the county’s health agency, last week collected urine samples from five people who say they may have consumed the meth-laced coffee.

Two employees gave blood samples for testing. The samples have been sent to the state crime lab in Missoula.

Copyright 2015 The Billings Gazette. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

More from the Gazette

Woman admits using high-heeled shoe in assault

Woman admits using high-heeled shoe in assault

January 23, 2015 3:11 pmLoading…
Woman charged with DUI No. 7

Woman charged with DUI No. 7

January 22, 2015 4:27 pmLoading…
Woman pleads guilty to lesser charge in assault case

Woman pleads guilty to lesser charge in assault case

January 22, 2015 10:47 am Photos

Photos

Loading…

Man charged with sexual intercourse without consent

January 21, 2015 7:00 pmLoading…
Washington man admits gun charge in Wal-Mart theft

Washington man admits gun charge in Wal-Mart theft

January 21, 2015 3:57 pmLoading…
Judge rejects plea agreement in Bakken meth conspiracy

Judge rejects plea agreement in Bakken meth conspiracy

January 21, 2015 3:29 pmLoading…

Billings man admits causing injuries while driving drunk

January 21, 2015 1:21 pmLoading…
Thieves steal camping gear from 2 Scout troops

Thieves steal camping gear from 2 Scout troops

January 20, 2015 4:30 pmLoading…

Woman charged with using brick to assault man in 2013

January 20, 2015 4:27 pmLoading…

Follow The Billings Gazette

Most Wanted

Most Wanted

Most Wanted

Wanted by United States Marshals Service Montana Violent Offender Task Force

January 19, 2015 12:00 amLoading…

Most wanted

Most wanted

Name: Christopher Knight

January 05, 2015 12:00 amLoading…

Crime Watch Map

Keep tabs on crime around the city. View Map

Billings Police Report

2013 Billings Police Department Annual Report. View Report

National crime statistics

Database: FBI hate crime statistics

Database: FBI hate crime statistics

Approximately 6,000 hate crimes motivated by gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, or disability were reported to the FBI in 2013.

Database: US college and university crime statistics

Database: US college and university crime statistics

Compare how U.S. colleges and universities rank for various crimes reported to campus or local authorities in 2013.

Database: US homicide victims by age, gender and ethnicity

Database: US homicide victims by age, gender and ethnicity

View homicide statistics for 2013 based on age group, gender and ethnicity. Data is compiled annually by the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UC…

Popular Stories

Get weekly ads via e-mail

Deals & Offers

Featured Businesses