Charges dropped, residents released from jail after ‘cocaine’ proves to be soap
New York police have dropped charges against two New York residents who spent almost a month in jail for allegedly harboring cocaine.
Tests confirmed two kilograms seized from the pair by police was actually soap.
A state trooper pulled the couple over Nov. 13 on Interstate 78 in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, for driving 5 mph over the speed limit and hugging the side of the lane. The trooper said he smelled marijuana, and the driver, 26-year-old Annadel Cruz, admitted that she’d smoked pot before leaving New York City. Cruz consented to a search of the new Mercedes-Benz, and the trooper found two brick-size packages covered in clear plastic wrap and red tape in a bag stowed in the trunk.
The driver insisted that the packages were soap she had made for herself, but the trooper performed a field test that showed the presence of cocaine. Cruz and her passenger Alexander Bernstein, 30, were taken into custody. The couple was charged with possession of cocaine, possession with intent to deliver, and conspiracy and possession of drug paraphernalia.
The two were released last week, after the Lehigh County district attorney’s office dropped the charges. State police lab tests returned the results that the packages were in fact soap. Attorneys are questioning the arrest and investigation, alleging the trooper racially profiled the couple. Cruz, a college student, had no criminal record.
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Another example of stop-and-frisk or a legitimate mistake?
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