Man pleads guilty to one of several drug charges

Brandon Bickel

GOSHEN — A Nappanee man charged with multiple counts of dealing meth will spend six years in prison under the terms of a plea agreement entered Thursday.

Brandon Bickel, 34, admitted to dealing between 5 and 10 grams of methamphetamine, a Level 3 felony with a potential sentence of up to 16 years in prison. His stipulated sentence includes six years in prison followed by four years suspended and on probation.

Another count of dealing meth as a Level 3 felony will all be dismissed, along with dealing as a Level 4 felony and misdemeanor counts of resisting law enforcement, possession of a controlled substance and possession of marijuana and a habitual criminal enhancement. He received those charges after being arrested Aug. 2 at his home as part of an investigation by the Elkhart County Intelligence and Covert Enforcement Unit.

Charges from a December arrest, including possession of a narcotic drug as a Level 6 felony and misdemeanor driving while suspended and possession of paraphernalia, will also be dismissed. Those crimes were allegedly committed in January 2017.

His August arrest was the result of undercover purchases arranged by ICE in June, July and August. Officers were executing a search warrant at his home when they saw him riding up on a bicycle, and arrested him after a brief foot chase.

In executing the search warrant, police found clear plastic baggies and a digital scale with a white powdery residue that field tested positive for meth. Bickel was found with marijuana wax and two LSD tabs on him at his arrest.

His admission in court Thursday was specifically to the June sale of meth.

His sentencing was set for May 24.

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