Centre County Drug Case – Running from Police on Penn State Campus

Marijuana Possession Charge Dismissed and Expunged

Client and three other Penn State students at University Park were near some trees in an area known for marijuana use. The Penn State, knowing that students routinely smoked in this area, were conducting a foot patrol, saw the students, and ordered them to leave the trees and talk to the police. Client ran. Client was ultimately tackled and arrested by Penn State police. Client was searched incident to arrest, and the police found marijuana. The client was charged with Possession of Small Amount of Marijuana in Centre County.

Experienced State College drug defense attorney Jason S. Dunkle filed a pre-trial motion seeking suppression of evidence.  The argument was that the police lacked reasonable suspicion to believe that Client was involved in criminal activity. Pennsylvania case law says that running the police by itself is not reasonable suspicion that justifies a detention. Before the hearing on the suppression motion, Centre County District Attorney agreed to dismiss the misdemeanor charge of marijuana possession if Client pleaded guilty to summary violations of Disorderly Conduct and Criminal Trespass. Client accepted the offer, so the misdemeanor marijuana possession charge was dismissed. The State College drug defense lawyer then filed an expungement petition to have the dismissed charges in Centre County expunged from the client’s criminal record.  The summary convictions can be expunged after 5 years.