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Cocaine bust nets prison sentence

A man accused of bringing a pound of cocaine to Douglas County for sale will spend the next year and a half in prison. Kevin Ronald Baird, 31, of Green Bay, was one of two men involved in a police drug bust in April of 2009 that netted more than ...

Kevin Ronald Baird

A man accused of bringing a pound of cocaine to Douglas County for sale will spend the next year and a half in prison.

Kevin Ronald Baird, 31, of Green Bay, was one of two men involved in a police drug bust in April of 2009 that netted more than a pound of cocaine. It was the largest undercover buy of cocaine in the region's history. Baird was sentenced Friday in Douglas County Court to 54 months in prison - 18 months of initial confinement and 36 months of extended supervision. He was also ordered to pay a $1,000 fine.

Baird told Superior Police officers he brought the cocaine from his source up to Ashland to meet Timothy W. Vaillancourt. The two men drove the cocaine to a Maple site, where undercover officers had arranged a sale. Baird pleaded no contest to one felony count of being party to the crime of delivering cocaine in February.

Judge Kelly Thimm took a brief recess after receiving two very different sentence recommendations from the attorneys involved. District Attorney Dan Blank recommended four and a half years in prison. Both Baird's attorney, Public Defender J. Patrick O'Neill, and a pre-sentencing investigation completed by a probation officer recommended five years of probation.

The drug trafficking took place at a time when Baird was laid off from his job and "started making stupid decisions," O'Neill said. While that is no excuse, he said, it was a contributing factor, as was chemical abuse.

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Since his arrest last year, Baird has kept clean. He regained his job and is supporting his children and girlfriend.

"One thing I've realized is I should always be there for my family," he told the court.

The Green Bay man made no excuses.

"Whatever comes my way I will take because it is my doing," Baird said. "It's my fault."

He said one of the best things to come out of his arrest last April was meeting investigator Jeff Harriman of the Superior Police Department. The detective not only arrested him, but encouraged him to go back and put his life back together.

Baird is now living the life he should be, Judge Thimm agreed, but doing the right thing now doesn't excuse his past actions. Although he didn't feel Baird was an evil or bad man, Thimm said, he did make some bad decisions.

"Suffice to say he was a part in bringing a significant amount of drugs to Douglas County," the judge said. "In my mind, that can't be tolerated."

Vaillancourt, who pleaded guilty to one count of delivering cocaine eight days before Baird made his plea, is scheduled to be sentenced next month.

Related Topics: CRIMESUPERIOR
Maria Lockwood covers news in Douglas County, Wisconsin, for the Superior Telegram.
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