ALLEGED DRUG DEALS: Whitley County men face meth charges

COLUMBIA CITY — Two Whitley County men had their first court appearance after they were arrested last week for a pair of alleged drug deals that occurred in Columbia City.Derek Kohut, 29, Columbia City, and Shane Bocskey, 26, Columbia City, were in Whitley County Circuit Court Monday. Kohut was arrested for two counts of dealing in methamphetamine, a Class B felony; two counts of possession of methamphetamine, a Class D felony; manufacturing of methamphetamine, a Class B felony; possession of two or more precursors, a Class D felony; and possession of paraphernalia, a Class A misdemeanor.Bocskey was arrested on two counts of dealing in methamphetamine and two counts of possession of methamphetamine.According to case reports, the two men were alleged to have participated in a pair of drug deals in the Walmart parking lot in Columbia City. The first was alleged to have occurred on Feb. 12, and the second Feb. 14.Case reports said a confidential informant met the pair on Feb. 12 and exchanged $120 for 1.25 grams of methamphetamine. The informant paid $50 and two boxes of pseudoephedereine for 1.6 grams of meth.Bocskey was the one who made the exchanges, according to case reports, with Kohut remaining in the vehicle.A search was performed at Kohut’s house. Empty battery casings were found outside along with burnt soda bottles near a burn pile. An active meth lab pot was found underneath a gas grill on the back porch of Kohut’s residence.According to case reports, Kohut admitted to dealing in meth a couple of times. Bocskey told investigators he had just become involved with meth. He stated he was a “middle man” and had become involved to help pay for cigarettes.The pair will be back in court on March 18 to continue pre-trial proceedings.