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Melonie Brown, Kevin Mason, David Purnell, Tyshun Meeks and Brittanie Robbins are all facing charges for their involvement in the distribution of heroin and crack cocaine in Marathon County. All five appeared for their initial appearance Monday in Marathon County Court. They remain behind bars on $100,000 cash bonds.
The Marathon County Special Investigations unit had been gathering information on the five co-defendants for several months including several undercover drug buys. But when a Mosinee man died of an apparent heroin overdose earlier this month the investigation intensified. Investigators believe they sold heroin to 26-year-old Justin Selves who died two weeks ago.
According to court documents, the defendants had knowledge of Selves' death and continued to sell heroin. One of the defendants admitted to authorities that the death was actually good for sales, because customers knew the product was strong.
A search warrant served at the Wausau Days Inn, on August 10th led to the arrest of four individuals and the discovery of nine grams of cocaine, three-and-a-half grams of heroin; both packaged for resale, along with a large amount of cash. A fifth suspect was arrested shortly before the bust, for selling heroin to a member of the Marathon County Special Investigations Unit.
The Marathon County Chief Deputy, Scott Parks says, heroin is making its way to the area from Milwaukee and Chicago and its availability has increased dramatically over the last few years. Authorities say all five defendants are involved in a drug trafficking ring being run out of Wausau and that the majority of the drugs are coming from the Chicago area.
The co-defendants have yet to be charged with involvement in Selves' death. The state is awaiting toxicology reports for cause of death, which won't be available for about six weeks.
The co-defendants are due back in court August 24th.
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