Suspected Drug Mules In Court

Two East Coast men face charges in Cass County in connection with an arrest involving six pounds of marijuana.

The Cassgram reports 31-year-old Joseph P. Walawender of Drum, Pennsylvania and 36-year-old John Shickora of Tresckow, Pennsylvania are charged with possession of marijuana with intent to deliver, a Class III Felony and possession of methamphetamine, a Class IV Felony. Walawender also faces an additional charge of possession of a controlled substance: Alprazolam, a Class IV Felony.

A preliminary hearing for Walawender was held in Cass County Court recently.

Nebraska State Patrol narcotics investigator Jason Scott testified that the two men were arrested at the I-80 eastbound rest stop in Cass County. Scott said a “ruse” operation had been set up with a sign along the interstate announcing a drug inspection stop was ahead with drug dogs on duty. However, there was no checkpoint. Instead narcotics investigators looked for suspicious activity after the sign was observed by interstate travelers.

Scott said the first thing that aroused suspicion was that the vehicle Walawender and Shickora were in backed into a parking stall near the restrooms and neither men used the facilities immediately like most rest stop visitors do. After questioning and a check of the rental vehicle’s registration, the odor of raw marijuana was evident, said Scott. The pot, about 10 grams of meth and 16 pills were found in the vehicle, he said.

Cass County Court Judge John Steinheider ruled there was probable cause for the charges and Walawender will be arraigned in Cass County District Court on January 10th.

Shickora waived his right to a preliminary hearing and is to be arraigned in district court today.
Both men are free on $25,000 bonds.


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