MADISON, WIS. - A federal grand jury in the Western District of Wisconsin, sitting in Madison, returned the following indictments today. You are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Polk County Woman Charged with Fraud Scheme

Sarah Anne Tischer, 42, Amery, Wisconsin, is charged with 5 counts of wire fraud in connection with her alleged misuse of an individual’s special needs trust for which she had been designated the trustee. The indictment alleges that the wire fraud was committed from October 2017 to September 2019. The indictment alleges that Tischer fraudulently obtained funds from the trust by claiming the funds were needed for home repairs that had been previously reimbursed by an insurance company, and that Tischer spent these funds on personal expenses and at a casino. The indictment also alleges that Tischer used funds from the trust to purchase property that she claimed was for recreational purposes, but records from Tischer’s insurance company show that Tischer planned to use the house for rental purposes. In addition, the indictment alleges that Tischer withdrew cash from the trust’s checking account and spent the funds at a casino.

If convicted, Tischer faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison on each count. The charges against her are the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with the assistance of the Polk County Sheriff’s Office and the Polk County Human Services Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Chadwick Elgersma is handling the prosecution.

Madison Man Charged with Drug & Gun Crimes

Sylvester Ray Gavins, Jr., 31, Madison, Wisconsin, is charged with possessing with the intent to distribute cocaine and heroin, with possessing a loaded firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, and with being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition. The indictment alleges that on March 26, 2021, he possessed cocaine and heroin for distribution and a loaded .40 caliber firearm and .40 caliber ammunition.

If convicted, Gavins faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison on each of the possession with intent to distribute charges, and 10 years on the charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm. The charge of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 5 years in federal prison, which federal law requires to be served consecutive to any other prison term imposed.
The charges against Gavins are the result of an investigation by the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorney Corey Stephan is handling the prosecution.

Three Marathon County Residents Charged with Drug Crimes

In related matters but in two separate indictments, three Marathon County residents have been charged with methamphetamine trafficking. Victor Pennington, 26, and Lucas Ellwart, 28, both of Wausau, Wisconsin, are charged with conspiring to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine. The indictment alleges that the conspiracy operated from June through September 2021.

The indictment also charges them with distributing 50 grams or more of methamphetamine on June 24, 2021 and July 14, 2021, and with possessing 500 grams or more of methamphetamine for distribution on September 14, 2021. In addition, Pennington is charged with distributing 50 grams or more of methamphetamine on August 2, 2021.

Sarah Waggoner, 41, Norrie, Wisconsin, is charged with 3 counts of distributing methamphetamine and 1 count of possessing with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine. The indictment alleges that Waggoner distributed methamphetamine on April 9, May 10, and August 12, 2021, and that the May 10 distribution involved 50 grams or more of the drug. The indictment alleges that she possessed 500 grams or more of methamphetamine for distribution on September 2, 2021.

If convicted, Pennington, Ellwart and Waggoner face a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years and a maximum of life in federal prison on the counts alleging 500 grams or more of methamphetamine, and a mandatory minimum of 5 years and a maximum of 40 years on the counts alleging 50 grams or more of methamphetamine. Waggoner faces a maximum of 20 years on the other two distribution counts. The charges against them are the result of an investigation by the Central Wisconsin Narcotics Task Force, Wausau Police Department, Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation, and Drug Enforcement Administration. Assistant U.S. Attorney Taylor Kraus is handling the prosecution.

Kansas Man Charged with Possessing Methamphetamine for Distribution

Jimmy Castillo, 22, Topeka, Kansas, is charged with possessing with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine. The indictment alleges that he possessed the methamphetamine on February 19, 2022.

If convicted, Castillo faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years and a maximum of life in federal prison. The charge against him is the result of an investigation by the La Crosse Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Aaron Wegner is handling the prosecution.
Two Dane County Men Charged with Being Felons in Possession of Firearms

Alexander Jefferson-Cooper, 28, and Zendel Rolack, 26, both of Oregon, Wisconsin, are charged with being felons in possession of firearms. The indictment alleges that on September 7, 2021 through October 5, 2021, Jefferson-Cooper possessed a Walther handgun. It further alleges that on October 5, 2021, Rolack possessed a Smith and Wesson revolver, a Cobra handgun, and a Walther handgun.

If convicted, Jefferson-Cooper and Rolack each face a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison. The charges against them are the result of an investigation by the Fitchburg Police Department, Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorney Taylor Kraus is handling the prosecution.

DeForest Man Charged with Gun Crime

Raymond Poore, 29, DeForest, Wisconsin, is charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm. The indictment alleges that he possessed a loaded 9mm handgun and 9mm ammunition on November 18, 2021.

If convicted, Poore faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison. The charge against him is the result of an investigation by the Madison and Monona Police Departments, Dane County Sheriff’s Office, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Anderson is handling the prosecution.

Milwaukee Man Charged with Gun Crime

Brian D. Mitchell, 32, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition. The indictment alleges that he possessed a Glock 48 handgun and 9mm ammunition on December 22, 2021.

If convicted, Mitchell faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison. The charge against him is the result of an investigation by the Wisconsin State Patrol and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven Anderson is handling the prosecution.


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