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Arrests follow raid on Somerset house

Justin J. Grobner

A Somerset man accused of operating a drug house returned to court this week after officers raided his home while searching for a man sought by Nevada authorities.

The Sept. 26 incident led to two arrests, the discovery of suspected methamphetamine, extensive drug paraphernalia and a gun, according to court documents filed in the case.

The resident, Justin J. Grobner, 40, was charged with maintaining a drug trafficking place, meth possession as a party to a crime — both felonies — and misdemeanor drug paraphernalia possession.

He was released from St. Croix County jail on a signature bond after his initial court appearance Sept. 27. A preliminary hearing was set for Friday, Oct. 12.

According to a criminal complaint:

St. Croix County sheriff's deputies checked on a home Sept. 24 at 419 Schachtner St. in Somerset after learning a man sought for a probation violation on a Nevada robbery conviction was there.

Two days later, after receiving a search warrant for the home, officers went to the home and found the wanted man, identified as David L. Degraaf, 39. A Wausau woman was also found in the home, though she was neither arrested nor charged in connection with the incident.

She was living in a room with Degraaf, where officers found meth residue on a broken mirror piece and on other items, a radio frequency jammer, gem bags and two digital scales.

Deputies noted seeing cameras set up on the home's exterior.

A search of the basement turned up more scales, drug paraphernalia, hard drives for the camera system, counterfeit $100 bills, a safe, .40-caliber ammunition, a .40-caliber handgun — which Grobner said was legally purchased — and a cut padlock for a handgun case. The safe contained a brownish-colored powder.

Grobner was later arrested and jailed. He asked that deputies hold $2,883 in cash that was in his car. In an email to RiverTown Multimedia, Grobner said the cash was from his job and was returned to him after being released from jail.

In a jailhouse interview, Grobner admitted the safe was his and that the substance inside was "Molly," the street term for MDMA. He also admitted the paraphernalia found in the house was his and that "the massive amount of syringes and meth paraphernalia had accumulated over a five-year period," the complaint states.

Mike Longaecker

Mike Longaecker is the regional public safety reporter for RiverTown Multimedia. His coverage area spans St. Croix and Pierce counties. Longaecker served from 2011-2015 as editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. A University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate, Longaecker previously reported for the Red Wing Republican Eagle and for the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau. You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker

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