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Press Release

California Woman Sentenced for Shipping Methamphetamine to Red Cliff Reservation

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Wisconsin

MADISON, WIS. – Scott C. Blader, United States Attorney for the Western Disttrict of Wisconsin, announced that Rita Witter, 69, Fremont, California, pleaded guilty and was sentenced last week by U.S. District Judge William M. Conley to three years in prison for conspiring to distribute methamphetamine.  Witter appeared in federal court in Madison on March 7.

Witter conspired with others, including her son, to traffic methamphetamine to the Red Cliff Reservation in Bayfield, Wisconsin.  While the conspiracy was ongoing for approximately one year, Witter did not join until the final six months.  During that time, she shipped four or five packages containing substantial amounts of methamphetamine to the Red Cliff Reservation.  Judge Conley described Witter as knowingly fueling the addiction of untold others in the small Red Cliff community.

Rita Witter and three other individuals were charged for their roles in this methamphetamine distribution conspiracy.  All have pleaded guilty and Witter is the second to be sentenced.  Simon Sayers was sentenced to 7.5 years in prison for his role in the conspiracy.  Ryan Witter, Rita Witter’s son, is scheduled to be sentenced March 20, and Tyrone Butterfield’s sentencing is scheduled for April 3.

The charge against Witter was the result of an investigation conducted by the Red Cliff Police Department; Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation; U.S. Postal Inspection Service; Drug Enforcement Administration in Wisconsin and California; Bayfield County Sheriff’s Office; Ashland Police Department; and the Fremont (Calif.) Police Department.  The prosecution of the case has been handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Diane Schlipper. 

Updated March 11, 2019

Drug Trafficking