News and Press Releases

two gleason residents sentenced on federal drug charge

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 27, 2012

Madison, Wis. - John W. Vaudreuil, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Randy J. Ballmer, 49, and Delcina P. Hochstetler, 52, both of Gleason, Wis., were sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Barbara B. Crabb for conspiring with others to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine. Ballmer was sentenced to 60 months in federal prison and Hochstetler was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison. Federal prison sentences are served without the possibility of parole.

During 2008 and 2009, Ballmer and Hochstetler gathered hundreds of grams of pseudoephedrine through dozens of purchases made at pharmacies and stores in the Lincoln County area. They also enlisted the help of friends and acquaintances in purchasing a large number of boxes of cold medicine which contained the pseudoephedrine necessary to manufacture methamphetamine.

The prosecutions of Ballmer and Hochstetler were the result of an extensive investigation of methamphetamine manufacturing conducted by the Merrill Police Department, Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department, and Wisconsin Department of Justice, Division of Criminal Investigation. The cooperative state, local, and federal investigation has resulted in the conviction of eighteen people involved in over a dozen separate methamphetamine cooking operations during 2008 through 2010.

The following defendants were previously convicted and sentenced in federal court in connection with this investigation:

  1. 1. Larry Dole, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 10 years, 10 months;
  2. Antonio Lance, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 12 years, 5 months;
  3. Jody Simon, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 10 years;
  4. Shawn Ably, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 6 years;
  5. Jake Barttelt, manufacture of methamphetamine, sentenced to 5 ½ years;
  6. Daniel Bohman, manufacture of methamphetamine, sentenced to 4 years;
  7. Joshua Graham, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 10 years;
  8. Chuck Groff, conspiracy to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 12 years;
  9. Paul Rasmussen, attempted manufacture of methamphetamine, sentenced to 5 years;
  10. David Bienfang, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 4 ½ years;
  11. Hal “Casey” Mulford, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 3 ½ years;
  12. Richard Koput, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 11 years;
  13. Christopher Schmeltzer, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 27 months;
  14. Charles “Mike” Bear, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 9 years;
  15. Bernard Robertson, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 17 years, 7 months; and
  16. Michael Ritchie, conspiracy to possess pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, sentenced to 5 years, 10 months.

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

 

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