NORTH ADAMS -- Two of three family members charged with cultivating and distributing marijuana in January have now had their cases dropped.
Monique Suters, 44, of East Quincy Street, had three misdemeanor drug charges dismissed in Northern Berkshire District Court on Monday. Her son, Makenzie, had the same charges dropped earlier this year.
Whitney Suters, Monique’s husband, still faces several drug charges from two separate cases.
The court threw out the case on the grounds that Monique Suters was not afforded a show cause hearing before a clerk-magistrate prior to coming before a judge. The charges could be brought forth again by prosecutors, but the process would have to begin anew with a show cause hearing.
Police say they discovered several pounds of marijuana, a scale, and other growing equipment in the family’s home after receiving a 911 call for a leaking water pipe at the residence.
In a motion to dismiss, Monique Suters’ attorney, Anthony Gianacopoulos, argued that his client was never arrested and never given notice of a show cause hearing.
If the charges are brought against Monique Suters again, Gianacopoulos would file a motion to suppress on the basis that the police department’s search of the home was unlawful, he said during a phone interview on Tuesday.
Gianacopoulos also said it was a stretch to charge Monique Suters with being a culpable partner in the distribution of marijuana.
"[My client is] a productive member of the community," Gianacopoulos said.
North Adams Police Sgt. James Burdick said Tuesday that the department had not been notified that the charges were dismissed.
Whitney Suters, 46, still faces charges of assaulting a police officer, class D drug possession, and two counts of class D drug possession to distribute. In a separate case, stemming from an April incident, Suters is charged with failing to stop for police, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, having an expired inspection sticker, and two counts of class D drug possession with intent to distribute.