By Liz Shepherd
WARSAW — A Syracuse man received a suspended sentence after two instances of dealing a controlled substance to an undercover officer with the NET43 Drug Task Force.
Michael Alen Perzanowski, 52, 8469 E. Lakeview Drive, Syracuse, was charged with dealing in a schedule IV controlled substance, a level 5 felony. An additional controlled substance dealing charge was dismissed as part of a plea agreement.
Perzanowski was sentenced in Kosciusko Circuit Court on Monday, Jan. 4.
In March 2019, an officer with the NET43 Drug Task Force made a controlled purchase of 15.6 grams of Alprazolam from Perzanowski. In April 2019, an officer made a second controlled purchase of 11.7 grams of Alprazolam from Perzanowski. Both controlled purchases were captured by digital surveillance.
Alprazolam is an anti-anxiety medication also known as Xanax.
Court proceedings focused on Perzanowski’s growth and the lifestyle changes he’s made. Several letters of support on Perzanowski’s behalf were also submitted to the court.
“He’s taken very serious steps toward recovery,” said Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Matt Buehler about Perzanowski. “This certainly goes a long way toward his improvement.”
“He’s made significant changes and wants to keep on the path he’s on,” said Defense Attorney Scott Reust. “He’s a different person than he was when he was committing crimes.”
“My life has changed course and that has saved my life,” said Perzanowski. “If I don’t stay vigilant in my recovery, it’s back to square one.”
For dealing in a schedule IV controlled substance, Kosciusko Circuit Court Judge Michael Reed sentenced Perzanowski to three years in the Indiana Department of Corrections. The entirety of the sentence was suspended, with the first two years of Perzanowski’s sentence to be served through work release. Perzanowski also has 35 days of jail time credit in the case.
“This is hard because you’ve done so much improvement,” said Judge Reed. “Stay on the path you’re on.”