One of the two men that was arrested during a WING Drug Task Force bust in rural Gering was sentenced on amended charges earlier this month in Scotts Bluff County District Court.
In December, members from WING, Nebraska State Patrol and the Scotts Bluff County Sheriff’s Office served a search warrant on a residence on County Road 20, outside of Gering.
During the search, investigators found approximately 75 marijuana plants hidden behind a false wall in a potato cellar. Investigators also discovered a butane hash oil extraction lab, nine firearms, and a small amount of methamphetamine.
46-year-old Robert Newton and 51-year-old William Burkhardt, both of Gering, were arrested for cultivating marijuana, manufacturing hash, and possession of a controlled substance.
On March 1st, Burkhardt had 5 of his 6 charges dropped. The sixth charge- Distribution of a Controlled Substance- was amended to Attempt of a Class 4 felony. He pleaded no contest and was sentenced to 60 days in jail, with 73 days credit for time already served.
Newton is still facing 5 felony charges in that case, including Distribution of a Controlled Substance, Possession of a Controlled Substance, Possession of a Firearm in the Commission of a Felony, and Possession of a stolen firearm. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
Newton’s next court date in this matter is on April 9th for a motion to suppress.