Oct. 1-EAU CLAIRE - An Augusta man who deals significant quantities of cocaine from Mexico, and other drugs, faces 20 criminal charges, authorities say.
Hazard was also found to be in possession of numerous firearms and silencers, authorities said.
Michael G. Hazard, 48, S11074 Highway V, was charged recently in Eau Claire County Court with four felony counts of possession of a firearm by a felon, two felony counts of cocaine delivery, two felony counts of possession of cocaine with intent to deliver, two felony counts of maintaining a drug trafficking place, two felony counts of possession of a fully automatic weapon, a felony count of cocaine manufacturing, a felony count of possession of controlled substances with intent to deliver, a felony count of possession of methamphetamine with intent to deliver, a felony count of possession of marijuana with intent to deliver, a felony count of possession of a firearm silencer, a felony count of possession of an electric weapon, and misdemeanor counts of carrying a concealed weapon and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Eau Claire County Judge Beverly Wickstrom set a $500,000 cash bail for Hazard, which prohibits him from having contact with anyone involved in illegal drug activities, and requires him to maintain absolute sobriety and surrender his passport.
Hazard returns to court Oct. 25 for a preliminary hearing.
According to the criminal complaint:
Between September 2021 and January, investigators were in contact with informants who indicated Hazard was involved in selling various drugs including cocaine and pills containing fentanyl, which had been manufactured in Mexico.
The informants said Hazard was involved in trafficking large quantities of cocaine and described instances where Hazard had been in possession of more than two pounds of cocaine.
The informants said Hazard was also in possession of firearms and silencers.
The informants indicated Hazard would make occasional trips to the U.S. and Mexico border to obtain drugs and had direct connections with a drug cartel.
In March, informants relayed information that Hazard planned to make a trip to Mexico to replenish his supply of drugs. Informants later said Hazard was stopped near the border by federal Drug Enforcement Administration agents but was released. Hazard confirmed by text message that he was arrested by the DEA for having 1,000 grams of cocaine. Hazard said he made a deal with the DEA despite being the "top and bottom of this cocaine ring."
Authorities conducted controlled buys of cocaine in April and May between a Hazard and an informant.
An informant who had been to Hazard's residence in July told authorities that Hazard had five or six assault rifles, a sniper rifle, a pistol with a homemade silencer, a couple of other handguns and a flare gun/grenade launcher.
In August, Hazard showed an informant how he manufactures crack cocaine at his residence.
On Sept. 27, authorities executed a search warrant at Hazard's residence and arrested him.
During the search, authorities found 33 firearms, an electric Taser, a homemade silencer, body armor, marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine and more than 20 drug pipes.
During an interview with authorities on Sept. 28, Hazard said as long as he wasn't hurting anyone or stealing, he could do whatever he wanted. He said he was merely providing a service that the "free country" could use.
Hazard said he had worked out an arrangement where he would not need to cross the border. He would get a "burner" phone to contact his supplier and they would meet at the border for the cocaine.
Hazard said the guns in his house belonged to one of his sons.
Hazard said he did not sell cocaine to make money, but instead he wanted to "put good drugs on the street." He said he was charging $1,500 per ounce of cocaine and was "fronting" people.
Hazard is being prosecuted as a repeat offender. He was convicted of a felony count of bail jumping in August 2017 in Chippewa County and a misdemeanor count of possession of marijuana in December 2001 in Eau Claire County.
If convicted of the felony charges, Hazard could be sentenced to up to 111 years in prison.