PITTSFIELD -- A Pittsfield man was placed on probation Thursday on a drug distribution charge that involved almost 32 pounds of marijuana with an estimated street value of $25,000.
Lance X. King, 23, of Lafayette Street, pleaded in Central Berkshire District Court to facts sufficient to warrant a guilty finding on a single charge of possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute.
Despite the weight of the drugs, the charge against King was filed as a misdemeanor. A student at Berkshire Community College, King has a job and no previous criminal record.
He received the marijuana through the mail, according to police and prosecutors.
District Court Judge Charles W. Groce III continued the finding of guilt against King for one year. During that time, King is required to remain drug free and submit to random tests.
He also agreed to forfeit $3,400.
If King stays out of trouble and abides by those conditions for 12 months, his case will be dismissed.
Groce adopted a sentencing recommendation offered by King's attorney, Anthony Gianacopoulos.
The Berkshire District Attorney's Office asked the court to order King to serve nine months of an 18 month sentence followed by a similar period of probation.
"I thought the judge made a reasoned and measured decision and looked at the whole case and my client's circumstances," said Gianacopoulos.
"He's a full-time student at Berkshire Community College studying criminal justice, works full time for UPS and had no previous criminal record.
According to police and prosecutors, the Berkshire County Drug Task Force recovered $25,000 worth of marijuana in boxes scattered through a house following a raid on a Crane Avenue residence on Oct. 5, 2011. All of the marijuana had been sent to King through the mail.
The raid of a second home turned up several thousand dollars allegedly related to marijuana sales. U.S. Postal Service inspectors assisted in the case. At the time of his arrest, the police declined to say who sent King the marijuana.
King had been free after posting $5,000 cash bail pending the disposition of his case.