02/20/14 Frank Andert, Jr., age 30, of North Liberty, was facing a felony charge in St. Joseph County of operating a vehicle as a habitual traffic violator. He told an informant here in Marshall County that he needed money to pay his South Bend lawyer, so he wanted to sell some methamphetamine. In fact, Andert got downright persistent about it and called the informant throughout the evening of February 21, and all morning on February 22, 2013. The source agreed to buy some methamphetamine, but only wanted half a gram. Andert insisted he would sell only a gram as he was not going to travel all the way from Walkerton to Plymouth for only a half a gram. The source then contacted Officer Ryan Hollopeter of the Marshall County Police Department.
A controlled buy was arranged with a video camera and an audio recording device and marked money of six twenty dollar bills. While discussing the details with the source, Andert telephoned and the call was placed on the speaker phone. Andert changed the original meeting place to the parking lot of a chain restaurant on North Michigan Street in Plymouth at 2:00 p.m. Officer Hollopeter followed the source to the restaurant and observed the transaction from a few feet away. The transaction was also recorded on video and audio recorded.
Andert was sentenced in St. Joseph County to 30 months of imprisonment on the habitual traffic offender charge. He has been serving his sentence at the Westville Correctional Facility and was returned to the Marshall County Jail to face this charge.
Judge Robert O. Bowen approved an agreement reached between Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Nelson Chipman and defense counsel Jason Cichowicz of South Bend. In accordance with that agreement, Bowen sentenced Andert Jr. in Marshall Superior Court No. 1 Wednesday, February 19th to a term of imprisonment of 10 years. No part of the sentence was suspended. Andert Jr. is eligible to petition the court for purposeful incarceration treatment after he serves 5 years with good time credit. He was returned to the Westville Correctional Facility to finish service of the St. Joseph County sentence and then to begin service of the Marshall County sentence.