News and Press Releases

11th Central Wisconsin Man Sentenced on Meth Charge

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 8, 2011

Madison, Wis. - John W. Vaudreuil, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Charles “Mike” Bear, 39, Schofield, Wis., was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge Barbara B. Crabb to nine years in prison, to be followed by a three-year period of supervised release, for conspiring to possess pseudoephedrine with the intent to manufacture methamphetamine from March 2009 to August 2009. Federal prison sentences are served without the possibility of parole.

The prosecution of Charles Bear was the result of an extensive and ongoing investigation conducted by the Merrill Police Department, Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department, and Wisconsin Department of Justice, Division of Criminal Investigation. To date, the cooperative local, state and federal investigation has resulted in the conviction of 16 people involved in over a dozen separate methamphetamine cooking operations from 2008 through 2010.

Within the past month, five other individuals pleaded guilty to similar charges of conspiring with others to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine. Bernard W. Robertson, 41, Tomahawk, Wis., pleaded guilty on May 3 and is scheduled to be sentenced on August 24. Michael B. Ritchie, 40, Merrill, Wis., pleaded guilty on June 3 and is scheduled to be sentenced on September 1. Larry G. Dole, 32, and Antonio P. Lance, 30, both of Merrill, pleaded guilty on May 6 and are scheduled to be sentenced on July 22, along with Jody R. Simon, 39, Merrill, who pleaded guilty on May 12.

Set forth below are the defendants who have previously been convicted and sentenced in federal court in connection with these investigations:

  1. Shawn Ably, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 6 years;
  2. Jake Barttelt, manufacture of methamphetamine, 5 ½ years;
  3. Daniel Bohman, manufacture of methamphetamine, 4 years;
  4. Joshua Graham, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, 10 years;
  5. Chuck Groff, conspiracy to manufacture methamphetamine, 12 years;
  6. Paul Rasmussen, attempted manufacture of methamphetamine, 5 years;
  7. David Bienfang, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, 4 ½ years;
  8. Hal “Casey” Mulford, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, 3½ years;
  9. Richard Koput, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, 11 years;
  10. Christopher Schmeltzer, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, 27 months.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert A. Anderson is handling the prosecution of these cases.

 

 

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