Crime & Courts

Accused McHenry drug dealer tried to thwart overdose investigation, police say

Person died shortly after delivery, attorney says

Nicole A. Free, 29, of the 2700 block of Stilling Boulevard, McHenry
Nicole A. Free, 29, of the 2700 block of Stilling Boulevard, McHenry

A McHenry woman remained in the McHenry County Jail on Friday afternoon on a $750,000 bond, jail records show.

Nicole A. Free, 29, of the 2700 block of Stilling Boulevard, is accused of delivering heroin to someone who died shortly after from an apparent drug overdose, McHenry County Assistant State’s Attorney John Gibbons wrote in a motion.

Gibbons and McHenry County Sheriff’s Lt. James Wagner declined to comment on the charges, including the name of the person who died, citing policies against speaking about open cases.

Toxicology results and a ruling on the official cause of death in the suspected overdose are not yet complete, according to the motion.

When police arrived to investigate the possible overdose, Free tried to get rid of evidence by “hiding narcotics in a tree,” according to a criminal complaint filed in McHenry County court. Gibbons would not elaborate on the claim.

She also allegedly deleted phone calls and text messages to try to hinder the officers’ investigation, the complaint stated.

McHenry County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Free on a $75,000 warrant Monday.

She is charged with possession with intent to deliver heroin, possession of a controlled substance and obstructing justice.

A conviction of the most serious charge, possession with intent to deliver, could result in a four- to 15-year prison sentence.

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