Drug Smuggling Arrests at Chippewa County Jail

The Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office not only serves the people of Chippewa County with Law Enforcement duties but they also run the Chippewa County Correctional Facility.

One of the many duties of the Corrections Staff, is maintaining safety and security, specifically preventing smuggling of contraband and narcotics.

Over the past several months Corrections Officers and Detectives have been extra busy with smuggling investigations.
Narcotics are often smuggled into the facility by those being arrested and those who carry the drugs internally. Other times friends or family, outside the facility, assist inmates by attempting to send in narcotics. Once the drugs are inside the facility the drugs are used and/or sold to other inmates. This causes a very high risk of overdose potentially.

Sheriff Bitnar highlighted a couple of those investigations that have recently resulted in Felony Charges:

INVESTIGATION #1
Methamphetamine Smuggled Internally Into Jail, August/2021
1- Weston LaCross, 29 year old, is suspected to have internally smuggled Methamphetamine into the Correctional Facility. LaCross sold Methamphetamine to other inmates. But do to the swift actions, Corrections Officers were able to seize the drugs while it was being passed to other inmates.
Charges
Count 1 – Delivery of Methamphetamine
Count 2 – Conspiracy to Deliver Methamphetamine
Count 3 – Inmate in Possession of Contraband
Habitual Offender
Bond $250,000.00 with tether

2- Michael Maclaren, 32 year old
Charges
Count 1 – Delivery of Methamphetamine
Count 2 – Conspiracy to Deliver Methamphetamine
Count 3 – Inmate in Possession of Contraband
Habitual Offender
Bond $10,000.00 with Tether

3- Timothy Hutchings 37 year old
Charges
Count 1- Conspiracy to Deliver Methamphetamine
Habitual Offender
$200,000.00 with tether

4- Colby Harmon 19 year old
Charges
Count 1- Conspiracy to Deliver Methamphetamine
Bond $200,000.00 with Tether

5- River McGrail 19 year old
Charges
Count 1- Conspiracy to Deliver Methamphetamine
Bond $100,000.00 with Tether

6- Bradley Franklin 37 year old
Charges
Count 1- Conspiracy to Deliver Methamphetamine
Habitual Offender
Bond $10,000.00 with Tether

INVESTIGATION #2
Corrections Officers were seizing narcotics that were being sent by US Mail to inmates within our facility. Corrections and Detectives conducted a joint smuggling investigation.

The investigation resulted in two arrests:
1-Timothy Alan Hutchings
– Conspiracy to Deliver Suboxone
– Conspiracy to Deliver contraband into correctional facility

2- Lauren Ashley Williams 32 yr old Sault resident
– Conspiracy to Deliver Suboxone
– Furnish contraband to prisoner
– Conspiracy to furnish contraband to prisoner

INVESTIGATION #3
An inmate had a family member drop off an item for her at the Chippewa Co Sheriff’s Office. During inspection narcotics were found. This investigation lead to the arrest of the family member and the inmate.
1- Harley McKerchie 28 yr old
– Contraband, Prisoner

2- Victoria Jane Ruddell 46 yr old
– Delivery of Suboxone
– Furnishing contraband to prisoner
– Conspiracy to deliver contraband to prisoner

I would like to thank our Corrections Officers and Detectives for their diligence in keeping narcotics out of our Correctional Facility. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty.

The Chippewa Co Sheriff’s Office continues to investigate additional smuggling cases and will keep you updated on future arrests.

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This story was prepared by the staff at EUP News or contributed from an outside source.

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