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New drug charge for prisoner

A Mahnomen man who is currently serving time in the St. Cloud state prison on other charges made his first appearance Monday in Becker County District Court on a new felony drug charge.

Donald Arthur Merrill, 41, of 2238 Zawanong St., Mahnomen, was charged with one count of fifth degree controlled substance crime after allegedly forging a prescription from a doctor at the Barnesville Clinic in September 2011.

The forgery was discovered when a woman identified as Keri Puttbrese allegedly used Merrill's identification card along with the document in order to obtain a prescription for 180 pills of an unspecified controlled substance from Seip Drug in Detroit Lakes on Sept. 9, 2011.

Merrill is currently being held without bail at the Becker County Jail pending his next court appearance, at a Sept. 17 omnibus hearing.