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home : news : vilas county August 23, 2017

3/15/2014 9:14:00 AM
Arrests made in connection with suspected heroin overdose
54-year-old Lac du Flambeau woman died March 3

Brian Jopek

The death of a 54-year-old Lac du Flambeau woman from what is believed to be a heroin overdose in early March has led to the arrest of six people in Lac du Flambeau.

According to Lac du Flambeau Police Chief Bob Brandenburg, it happened March 3.

He said personnel with the Wisconsin Department of Justice’s Division of Criminal Investigation helped out in the ensuing investigation conducted as a result of the woman’s death.

“We’ve made six arrests so far,” Brandenburg told The Lakeland Times Friday. “DCI worked really hard with us.”

He said the DCI had four to six of its officers working 15 or 16 hours a day for four days beginning March 4.

According to a press release from the Tribal Communications Office of the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians, the six individuals were taken into custody for participating in the distribution of heroin on the reservation.

“They don’t make it [the heroin] here,” Brandenburg said Friday. “It was all coming from the Chicago area.”

The press release said  the Lac du Flambeau Police Department had received a report the afternoon of March 3 of a non-responsive subject at 514 Waswagon St., in Lac du Flambeau.

Upon arrival, the victim was found to be unresponsive, not breathing and had no pulse.

Attempts to revive the woman by ambulance crews from Lac du Flambeau and Howard Young Medical Center in Woodruff were unsuccessful and she was pronounced dead at the scene.

 The official cause of death is pending toxicology results, but is believed to be a drug-related overdose.

The victim’s name is being withheld pending completion of the investigation.

Other agencies involved in the investigation that led to the six arrests were the Vilas County Sheriff’s Department, Native American Drug and Gang Initiative and the North Central Drug Enforcement Group.

 “The Lac du Flambeau Police Department and the Lac du Flambeau Tribal Government remain committed to stopping the infiltration of illegal drugs into our community,” Brandenburg said in the press release.

Brian Jopek may be reached at bjopek@lakelandtimes.com.

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