Administrator to Pacific Northwest social group arrested for supplying alcohol to minors

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

STANWOOD, Wash. – Snohomish County sheriff’s deputies and an ambulance were called to a Stanwood home that law enforcement said was center stage for a party where 150 to 200 minors consumed alcohol and smoked marijuana Friday night.

According to social media posts, the party was supposed to last 48 hours at a private residence on 10 acres in Snohomish County. People were told to bring their own drinks and drugs and that “cops can’t legally come onto the property without a warrant.”

The Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office said they responded to property near the 28000 block of 28th Ave NW, in an unincorporated area outside of Stanwood.

Upon arriving, deputies noticed juveniles drinking, several fights, and continued reports that one of the partygoers was not breathing inside the residence.

Lieutenant Keith Rogers said several adults attempted to prevent authorities from entering the property to provide aid. Roger said the adults were later booked into jail.

Rogers blames the people promoting the party on Facebook.

“This got out of hand,” said Rogers, with Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office. “I believe that the people involved wanted it to get out of hand.”

Lt. Rogers said one of the major players promoting the party, Jahmil Watkins, was booked into Snohomish County Jail Saturday morning charged with providing alcohol to minors.

Watkins is listed as the administrator of a private Facebook group called Elite Projects. It’s self-described as the premier socializing network in the Pacific Northwest. Currently, the group boasts 33,000 members. Details about Friday’s party in Stanwood went out to page members.

“He posted it and the whole world could see that this party was occurring and kids traveled from out of the region to be there,” said Rogers. “There was alcohol and marijuana being consumed at this party.”

Three other adults were arrested, along with a minor. Rogers said they could be facing charges for providing premise, basically providing and promoting a place for underage drinking to occur. Rogers confirms there were no fatalities at Friday’s party, despite rumors on social media.

'They brought their own alcohol'

The homeowner where the party took place, spoke to Q13 News, but would not provide his name or show his face. Identified only as “John Smith,” an alias, he said he blames social media for the party getting out of control. He said he did not know teens would be smoking or drinking and did not know his home address was being shared.

“I thought maybe he’d learned something from last week, but apparently he didn’t,” said Smith about his son. John Smith said last week his son hosted a party at his home and it ended with Snohomish County sheriff’s deputies responding to shots fired. On Friday night, the party ended with reports of an unresponsive teen.

“He’s done,” said Smith, “No parties.”

Smith also blamed Facebook for the party getting out of hand. “You can send one message to multiple people at the same time,” he said. “Everybody’s got 300, 400, 500 friends and it goes viral in hours.”

“If they didn’t do it here, they would do it somewhere else,” said Smith. “They’re going to do it. They are going to do it somewhere.” Smith said. “I didn’t want any part of it, so I just went into my room and shut the door.”

Smith worries that he could face charges, or could have been held liable if the teen didn’t recover. But ultimately he said he didn’t condone what the party became.

“They brought their own alcohol, their own party here.”

In Washington State, providing premise is a gross misdemeanor, the same as providing alcohol to minors. Both crimes carry up to $5,000 dollars in fines and up to a year in jail.