Linden shopkeeper charged over drug possession, disorderly conduct

A Linden shopkeeper has been charged with drug possession and disorderly conduct after police allegedly found 71lbs of cannabis on the roof of his shop.

When Orville Mitchell, 32, of 1173 Central Amelia’s Ward, appeared at the Christianburg Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday, he pleaded not guilty to possession of cannabis and two counts of disorderly behaviour and he was placed on $195,000 bail.

Prosecutor Inspector Oswald Trim told Magistrate Ann McLennan that the cannabis was found on the roof of Mitchell’s shop and it was weighed in his presence at the police station and amounted to 71 lbs.

The disorderly behaviour charges stemmed from incidents that allegedly occurred on June 15 and 16, respectively.

Mitchell’s attorney, Michael Somersall, told the court that the defendant operates a shop at the Mackenzie Market. On Saturday June 15, he said, Mitchell was at his shop when he was searched by a “Corporal Wintz,” who was in the company of other ranks. Somersall said the other ranks went behind the shop as Wintz searched his client and they subsequently appeared with packages that were found near the shop. He added that Mitchell was then instructed to lock up the shop and questioned the order as nothing had been found on his person.

According to Somersall, police took Mitchell to the Mackenzie Police Station, where he was served a summons. The drugs were weighed in his presence and he was told that there are two categories of possession: constructive possession and on the person. As a result, the lawyer said an argument ensued, during which Mitchell stressed that the police did not find anything on him and he suggested to the court that the disorderly behaviour charge may have stemmed from that.

The magistrate granted Mitchell bail and ordered him to appear in court for report on August 20.

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