Ordered to pay $500 Fine
When Thomas Lawrence, of Lakewood, Colo., started the day on Wednesday, he faced a felony possession of a controlled substance charge after a traffic stop found him to be in possession of a variety of cannabis products, including .49 pounds of marijuana. He walked out of the courtroom after taking a plea agreement that reduced the charge to a class 1 misdemeanor, receiving a fine in the case.
The case arises from an incident in March 2018, in which a State Trooper conducted a traffic stop on U.S. Highway 385 after observing a black Subaru conduct an illegal U-turn upon entering a ruse checkpoint.
The driver of the Subaru was identified as Thomas Lawrence. In the Affidavit for Custody, the trooper noted that Lawrence displayed bloodshot eyes and the vehicle smelled like marijuana. He asked Lawrence if he had any marijuana in the vehicle, and Lawrence produced a small plastic tube with a marijuana joint inside it.
The trooper asked Lawrence to exit the vehicle and to sit inside the patrol unit. He asked Lawrence how much marijuana was in the vehicle, to which he responded there were a couple of ounces. He noted there was a backpack inside the vehicle.
The trooper placed Lawrence in the secure area of the patrol unit and searched the vehicle, locating a small plastic tube with “a marijuana roach,” a marijuana grinder with residue and a small, orange, plastic marijuana container.
The trooper then looked inside the backpack and found “multiple bags packages of marijuana and THC products.” The trooper later documented the amounts of the marijuana, determining there to be .49 pounds of packaged marijuana, 8 grams of THC wax, 2 containers of THC gummies and 8 boxes of chocolate THC doses, with 74 doses remaining.
Lawrence was placed under arrest and taken to the Alliance Police Department for a drug influence evaluation, which showed him to be under the influence of cannabis.
A complaint was filed in Box Butte County Court, charging Lawrence with possession of a controlled substance — hashish, a class 4 felony, possession of marijuana, more than one ounce and less than one pound, a class 3 misdemeanor, driving under the influence, a class W misdemeanor, no operator’s license, a class 3 misdemeanor, possession of drug paraphernalia, an infraction, and possession of marijuana or cannabinoids, an infraction.
Through the plea agreement, five of the misdemeanor and infraction charges were dropped, and the felony possession charge was amended to an attempt of a class 4 felony, which is a class 1 misdemeanor.
Lawrence pleaded guilty to the charge, and District Court Judge Travis O’Gorman sentenced him to pay a fine of $500.