By Carl Cooley
Felony drug charges have been filed against a Chetek man, apparently related to a drug dealing operation that was importing pounds of marijuana from Oregon at a time.
A complaint filed in Barron County Circuit Court on Thursday, Feb. 7, 2019, identifies the defendant as Michael A. Homme, 48, 1012 13th St., Unit 1, Chetek. He faces a felony charge of possession of marijuana with intent in an amount between 200 and 1,000 grams, as well as a misdemeanor charge of possession of drug paraphernalia.
According to the complaint, deputies with the Barron County Sheriff’s Department conducted a search warrant at Homme’s Grandview Apartments dwelling. They allegedly found a strong smell of marijuana when they entered.
On a coffee table, deputies reported finding drug paraphernalia and vacuum-sealed bags that were cut open and contained suspected marijuana.
In Homme’s bedroom, officers allegedly found a shoebox containing 27 rolls of ten $100 bills. Additional cash was found in the pockets of two pairs of jeans. In total, the money amounted to $38,220, court records said.
Deputies allegedly found 26 packages containing suspected marijuana. They ranged in size from 2.2 grams to 194 grams. Also found were 220 empty packages that were suspected of previously containing a half-pound or pound of marijuana each. Allegedly found in Homme’s vehicle was a digital scale.
In an interview with detectives, Homme allegedly said he was receiving between three-quarters of a pound and a pound of marijuana each week from a man named “Kiel.” Homme said the drugs cost him between $2,000 to $3,000.
Detectives identified this man as Kiel Slayton, who was charged Jan. 28 with felony possession with intent to deliver marijuana and conspiracy to possess marijuana with intent to deliver. In that case, court documents alleged Slayton had been receiving up to 10 pounds of marijuana at a time from Oregon and was distributing it to others to sell.
Homme alleged that he usually met Slayton on back roads to pay for the previous week’s delivery of marijuana. Then he’d receive another pound to sell for $200 to $240 per ounce.
Homme alleged he had picked up a pound of marijuana from Slayton that day, on Jan. 23, and that he had been buying from Slayton for about a year and a half.
Homme was not booked in jail on Jan. 23, but is scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday, Feb. 27, for an initial appearance.
If convicted of both charges, Homme faces a maximum sentence of up to 6 years and 30 behind bars, $10,500 in fines and 10 years’ suspended license.
Court records said Homme’s first appearance is Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019.