Grandmother rallies for teen's release on drug charges

Teen, mother accused of selling crack
Posted at 8:26 PM, Jan 15, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-16 12:08:08-05

A Racine woman is blaming her daughter for luring her granddaughter into a life of crime -- recruiting her to help sell crack cocaine near two elementary schools.

Mikayla Brown, 17 and mother, 41-year-old Marlena Banks, were arrested Wednesday at the Riverside Inn in Racine, and charged with several counts related to selling crack cocaine. Authorities say they found 22 grams of crack cocaine, drug packaging material and a scale. 

Cheryl Rohloff is the teen's grandmother and considers her the victim because she's a minor. She also says her granddaughter never wanted to engage in criminal activity. 

Rohloff said Brown has spent her entire life under the influence of her mother while living in an unstable home.

“Mikayla would have never done any of these things, she didn’t want to," Rohloff said. "The first thing out of her mouth when she called me from jail [Thursday] afternoon was, 'Grandma this is not me, this is not me, I have goals.'”

Rohloff says she is not disputing the claims of the criminal complaint, and she doesn't deny her granddaughter's involvement with illegal drugs.

However, she questions why the county spent, what she considers, eight months trying to build a case against her granddaughter instead of trying to remove the minor from a dangerous living environment.

“Yes, the police did catch her with drugs on her. Yes, all those things that they have in the criminal complaint are facts, but the real fact of the matter here is, she is the victim here," Rohloff said.

Rohloff shared photos of her granddaughter and recalled the times she helped paint her front stoop and read Harry Potter books together.

“The last text I got from Mikayla before this said, 'Do you know Harry Potter? Because I a-dumble-dore you,'" Rohloff said. "That is Mikayla."

According to Rohloff, Mikayla Brown is scheduled for a hearing a the Racine County Circuit Court Wednesday. Rohloff said she plans to attend the hearing and plans to protest.

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