William Gilbert, 42, of Waukegan, was arrested after McHenry County deputies allegedly found him with illegal drugs while checking on his broken-down car on Route 120 in July 2023. | Left Photo: Provided; Right Photo: TikTok @mindshiftmagic.bd

The attorney for an accused drug dealer said his client’s right to a fair trial was impacted after TikTok videos of the man’s McHenry County arrest went viral.

William Gilbert, 42, of Waukegan, was charged with manufacturing or delivery of methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine, manufacturing or delivery of heroin, possession of heroin, manufacturing or delivery of cocaine, manufacturing or delivery of fentanyl, two counts of possession of a controlled substance, resisting a peace officer causing injury and obstructing a peace officer.

On July 25, 2023, the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office made contact with a broken-down red Dodge Charger that was pulled over on the side of Route 120.

The driver, Gilbert, was waiting for his girlfriend’s father to arrive with a tow truck, court documents said.

Deputies suspected Gilbert of possessing and selling narcotics within McHenry County.

McHenry County Sheriff’s K-9 Deuce was deployed and conducted a free air sniff of the vehicle.

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The dog positively alerted to the presence of illegal narcotics on both the driver and passenger side of the vehicle, court documents said.

Deputies searched Gilbert and allegedly found on his person around 26.4 grams of methamphetamine, 4.5 grams of cocaine and fentanyl and 31.7 grams of heroin.

A bag with 2.8 grams of cocaine was also found on the driver’s side floorboard, court documents said.

Deputies also allegedly found a backpack that had three separate plastic bags with around 83.9 grams of methamphetamine.

Plastic bags, clear latex gloves, a digital scale with white residue and $2,902 cash were also found inside the Dodge and on Gilbert’s person, court documents said.

Deputies attempted to arrest Gilbert but he began resisting when being placed into handcuffs, a criminal complaint said.

Gilbert allegedly pulled away from deputies and fled on foot before locking himself in a vehicle.

A deputy attempted to gain entry to the vehicle through a window and injured his right hand.

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Deputies were eventually able to take Gilbert into custody.

On January 23, a TikTok page named “mindshiftmagic.bd” uploaded five video segments of a deputy’s body-worn camera that showed the July 2023 incident involving Gilbert.

Gilbert’s attorneys learned of the TikTok videos the next day.

Roderick Drobinski, Gilbert’s attorney, filed a motion and said that the TikTok videos present several issues for the defense, including “potential tainting of the jury pool, mishandling of evidence on a pending criminal prosecution, and potentially ethical or criminal violations of the law.”

“To the defense’s knowledge, these videos were maintained by law enforcement through Evidence.com, which maintains an audit list of all individuals who access and download files off of their website with particularity as to each file and each user who accesses those individual files,” Drobinski said.

McHenry County Sheriff’s Office Business Manager Sandra Salgado told the Northwest Herald that there was no breach in Evidence.com.

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The sheriff’s office released the videos under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to two out-of-state people who made requests, Salgado said.

Drobinski said in the motion that if the videos were released under FOIA, the records would be exempt from disclosure, citing parts of the FOIA law.

The five TikTok videos were viewed nearly 3 million times.

Drobinski asked the court to order the audit lists regarding the electronic files for the case to be preserved, to order the production of the audit lists pertaining to every video taken by law enforcement pertaining to the investigation related to the case and to order prosecutors to issue and serve a subpoena for any records and data related to the TikTok page that posted the videos.

A hearing on the motion is scheduled for February 27.