A multi-jurisdictional investigation into the December death of a Charlotte County resident led to the arrest of a Wisconsin man.
On December 26, 2017, Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to 447 Longley Drive in Port Charlotte after a call of Wyatt S. Cox, 25 who was not breathing.
Deputies began performing CPR on Cox until paramedics arrived but Cox died at the scene.
Cox’s fiancée told deputies that earlier in the afternoon a United States Postal Service driver arrived and delivered a yellow envelope with postage due, addressed to Cox, along with two regular size white envelopes.
After paying the postage due, Cox tucked the envelopes under his arm and said, “I have to use the bathroom.”
After two or three minutes, Cox exited the bathroom with the yellow envelope opened and its contents removed. The yellow envelope was from a company in Boscobel, Wisconsin.
The envelope contained a prescription nasal spray bottle Cox said he ordered because his sinuses were acting up, due to mold he is exposed to at work. Shortly after exiting the bathroom, Cox was unresponsive.
Two days later Detective Joe Scott with the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Unit sent the nasal spray bottle to the FDLE lab for analysis.
The initial lab analysis determined the nasal spray bottle contained Cyclopropyl Fentanyl.
The DEA in Madison, Wsconsin and the Wisconsin Department of Justice joined the United States Postal Inspection Service to investigate the source of the Fentanyl.
It was determined the Wisconsin-based business on the return address was not connected to Cox’s death. The Inspection Service was able to obtain label identification numbers, which revealed tracking numbers and, ultimately IP addresses, from individuals who tracked the package.
The parcels were linked to an Internet service at a suspect’s home. The subscriber of the IP address was identified as Michael Schoenmann, 39, of Dodgeville, Wisconsin.
Surveillance was conducted over two-weeks, during which a Postal Inspector saw Schoenmann mailing multiple packages. These packages were recovered and opened, after being granted federal search warrants, resulting in the seizure of twelve nasal spray containers containing liquid fluroroisobutyryl fentanyl.
On February 21, a Postal Inspector and members of Milwaukee High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Unit executed a search warrant on a subject who was receiving Fentanyl parcels from Schoenmann. This subject cooperated and law enforcement officials were able to take over the subject’s dark web account. This led to the USPIS converting buy money into bitcoins, and purchasing Fentanyl online from Shoenmann.
On March 6, agents were able to observe Schoenmann mailing the Fentanyl ordered by law enforcement and seized it. This led to a federal search warrant for Shoenmann’s residence.
On March 8, the search warrant was executed at Schoenmann’s home, resulting in the seizure of approximately 180 grams of powder Fentanyl.
In addition, mailing labels, mailing packages, a tub in which Schoenmann was diluting the powder Fentanyl and bottling the liquid, hundreds of nasal spray containers and fraudulent nasal spray labels were seized. The labels and containers matched the label and container from the nasal spray container retrieved from Wyatt Cox’s pocket.
While law enforcement officials were on scene executing the search warrant, an envelope addressed to Shoenmann arrived via the USPS. The envelope was opened and found to contain an additional 15 grams of powdered Fentanyl.
Michael S. Schoenmann was arrested and held without bond after appearing in court on March 12. Schoenmann could face up to 20 years in prison on the Fentanyl possession charge. Additional charges are expected.
Investigators will continue to gather intelligence from evidence seized at Shoenmann’s residence, with the ultimate goal of identifying Shoenmann’s source of Fentanyl supply, as well as well as contacting law enforcement agencies in all of the jurisdictions where Schoenmann shipped nasal spray containing Fentanyl.