ANDERSON — The trial of a Michigan man accused of felony drug dealing and identity deception is underway.

Robert P. Shorter, 40, of Westland, Michigan, is charged with Level 2 felony dealing in methamphetamine, at least 10 grams, two counts of Level 3 felony dealing in a narcotic, Level 6 felony identity deception, Level 3 felony dealing in methamphetamine and Class B misdemeanor habitual offender.

Shorter, who attended jury selection proceedings, was not present during opening statements. Before he addressed the jurors, defense attorney David Alger requested a mistrial because there were no black jury members.

Madison Circuit Court 4 Judge David A. Happe denied the motion.

Deputy Prosecutor Samantha Green said several controlled purchases were made for drugs involving Shorter and jurors would hear audio and see video from some of those buys.

She said they would also hear from the officers who conducted the investigation to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, Shorter was guilty as charged in the case.

On July 18, 2018, a confidential informant purchased 6.8 grams of a substance that later field tested positive for heroin from Shorter, according to an affidavit of probable cause by Michael Anderson of the Madison County Drug Task Force.

Five days later, Shorter was arrested and officers said they recovered 110 grams of a substance that field tested positive for methamphetamine and 7 grams of a substance that field tested positive for heroin.

Shorter was transported to the Madison County jail as John Doe after investigators learned he was using another man’s identification. Through fingerprinting authorities learned Shorter’s true identity.

Shorter’s trial resumes Wednesday in Madison Circuit Court 4 before Judge Happe.

Follow Traci L. Miller

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