Judge hands down 10-year sentence, $17,200 fine for PDC man convicted on meth charges

MADISON, Wis. (WKBT) — A Prairie Du Chien man will forfeit $17,200 and spend 10 years in prison.

U.S. District Judge William M. Conley sentenced 45-year-old Christopher Fernette to 120 months in federal prison for possessing methamphetamine with intent to distribute. Fernette pleaded guilty to the charge on April 6.

Fernette’s arrest was part of a long-term, multi-agency investigation into a group of people moving large amounts of meth in Western Wisconsin. In April, a Crawford County Sheriff deputy stopped Fernette in Ferryville. During a weapons pat-down, Fernette attempted to hide a small plastic bag in his hand, according to law enforcement. When asked about it, he tossed the bag away and a fight ensued.

Deputies detained Fernette and a search turned up three pounds of meth in a canvas tool bag left in a ditch and $17,200 in cash in the vehicle. Law enforcement officers say Fernette admitted that he and a passenger in the vehicle drove to Minnesota to purchase that meth. They intended to split it with a third party.