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Aitkin man faces felony drug sale charges

Kenneth W. Tikkanen

AITKIN—A 58-year-old Aitkin man faces a number of drug-related charges following an investigation by the Aitkin County Sheriff's Office.

Kenneth W. Tikkanen was charged Tuesday, Oct. 9, in Aitkin County District Court with five felonies: first-degree sales of a controlled substance, conspiracy to commit first-degree sales of a controlled substance, and second-, third- and fourth-degree sale of a controlled substance.

The charges stem from a pattern of behavior from Tikkanen, who while in custody at the Aitkin County Jail, continued to have Hydrocodone sent to his Farm Island Township residence from the Veterans Administration between May 15 and July 31 of this year, the sheriff's office reported. Once received by people at his residence, it was distributed per his instructions.

Hydrocodone is a prescription opioid commonly used for the treatment of pain. A couple of the brand names are Vicodin and Norco. It is known to be a powerful painkiller with a high potential for abuse and addiction.

Tikkanen made his court appearance in front of Judge David Hermerding. Bond/bail in the matter was set at $2 million without conditions or $500,000 with conditions. His next court appearance is set at 1:30 p.m. Nov. 5.