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Press Release

La Crosse Man Sentenced to 9 Years for Methamphetamine Trafficking & Gun Possession

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

MADISON, WIS. – Timothy M. O’Shea, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Nickolas S. Fitzpatrick, 50, La Crosse, Wisconsin was sentenced today by Chief U.S. District Judge James D. Peterson to 9 years in federal prison for possessing methamphetamine with intent to distribute and being a felon in possession of a firearm.   This prison term will be followed by 3 years of supervised release.  Fitzpatrick pleaded guilty to these charges on October 26, 2021.

On April 3, 2021, La Crosse police officers attempted to locate Fitzpatrick due to multiple active arrest warrants.  Officers found Fitzpatrick at a La Crosse motel and arrested him following a brief foot chase. After being placed in handcuffs, Fitzpatrick told the officers that he had a gun on him.  Officers searched Fitzpatrick and found a Walther P22 handgun, four baggies of methamphetamine, and a pocket scale, all in a purse wrapped around his body.  Officers found another bag of methamphetamine in Fitzpatrick’s coat pocket.  In total, Fitzpatrick possessed over 60 grams of methamphetamine. 

Fitzpatrick was prohibited from legally possessing a firearm due to multiple prior felony convictions.  He was on state extended supervision for delivering heroin at the time of this incident.  His criminal history includes convictions involving drug trafficking, weapon possession, and violence.

At sentencing, Judge Peterson highlighted the quantity of methamphetamine involved and Fitzpatrick’s prior history with weapons.  Judge Peterson expressed concern that Fitzpatrick is capable of dangerous and violent conduct and the sentence ordered was necessary to protect the community. 

The charges against Fitzpatrick were the result of an investigation conducted by the La Crosse Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.  The La Crosse County District Attorney’s Office assisted in the case.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven P. Anderson prosecuted this case. 

Updated March 1, 2022

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