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Faulty wiring in apparent marijuana grow operation caused La Crosse fire

La Crosse couple face drug charges

LA CROSSE, WI - Faulty wiring in an apparent marijuana grow operation lighting and ventilation system caused an apartment fire at 720 Main Street in La Crosse on September 16, according to a criminal complaint.

La Crosse couple Michael Sloan, 33, and Melissa Sader, 33, are facing drug charges.

Investigators executed a search warrant for apartment #3 and found 24 marijuana plants and other items that would be used in the growing of marijuana.

The criminal complaint states one of the growing operations was found inside a wardrobe, which was lined with grow lights and had ventilation duct work and fans set up. The second grow operation was located underneath the coffee table and also had grow lights and ventilation.

Sader told police she had no idea what was going on inside the bedroom of the apartment that she shared with Sloan. She said Sloan kept those doors locked.


Sloan and Sader have an 8-year-old daughter who was sleeping in the bedroom of the apartment at the time the fire stated and Sader had to get her out safely, the complaint states.

Sloan and Sader have been charged with manufacture/deliver THC (tetrahydrocannabinols) (>1000-25000G)-as party to a crime.  On Tuesday, a La Crosse County judge set a $5,000 signature bond for Sloan and Sader.

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