By DON O'BRIENHerald-Whig Staff Writer
Two people arrested during a methamphetamine bust last month in Quincy will stand trial after Judge Scott Walden found there was probable cause during a preliminary hearing Wednesday afternoon.
Frank J. Mullet, 51, and Danielle D. Wolkitt, 39, both pleaded not guilty to the Class X felony charges of aggravated methamphetamine manufacturing. They were two of five people arrested Dec. 19 in connection with a search of a house in the 2000 block of Hampshire. Mullet and Wolkitt lived at the house with two other people who were also arrested that day -- Rita R. Black, 25, and William J. Mullet, 31.
Also arrest during the sting was Sheldon L. Broome, 33, of the 800 block of Madison.
Matt Mueller, an Adams County Sheriff's Department deputy who is working with the West Central Illinois Task Force, testified that officers found a "shake-and-bake" meth lab, Coleman fuel and other drug paraphernalia in the bedroom used by Black and William Mullet.
In the bedroom of Frank Mullet and Wolkitt, Mueller said officers found a Pyrex dish under the bed with a white substance believed to be meth. They also found lithium batteries in the closet in Mullet and Wolkitt's bedroom. Officers also found a camera case in the closet that had what was believed to contain meth.
Mueller testified that Wolkitt "used meth twice a day" and was "addicted to meth." Wolkitt told Mueller that she had kicked her meth habit until William Mullet moved into the house and she started using again. Frank Mullet told Mueller that "he tried meth a long time ago but didn't like the taste." Mueller said Frank Mullet said he tried it again and "got hooked on it."
Mueller testified that a confidential source helped tip off law enforcement about what was happening at the house.
Adams County Public Defender Brett Jansen said neither Frank Mullet nor Wolkitt was responsible for manufacturing the meth, saying William Mullet and Broome were the primary cookers.
First Assistant State's Attorney Gary Farha said Frank Mullet and Wolkitt were complicit in the manufacture of the drug.
"They allowed it to be made in their house and took meth for rent," Farha said.
Walden said he found probable cause for the case to advance to the trial stage. Both Frank Mullet and Wolkitt pleaded not guilty to the charges. Their case was put on the February jury docket. The Class X felony carries a mandatory prison sentence of between six and 30 years and three years of parole. They are facing an aggravated meth manufacturing charge because children also lived in the home.
Mullet successfully had his $100,000 bond lowered to $10,000 so that he could take care of a disabled family member.
He posted $1,000 after the hearing and is free on bond.
Wolkitt, who wept throughout most of Wednesday's hearing, is being held in the Adams County Jail in lieu of a $60,000 bond. At the end of Wednesday's hearing, she mouthed, "Get me out of here," to her supporters sitting in the gallery.
Black waived her preliminary hearing Wednesday. She is lodged in the Adams County Jail in lieu of a $100,000 bond.
William Mullet also remains jailed in lieu of a $100,000 bond. He has a hearing set for Thursday.
Broome is being held in the Adams County Jail in lieu of a $150,000 bond. His preliminary hearing is set for Jan. 16.