Patriots’ Patrick Chung Pleads Not Guilty To Cocaine Possession
Chung pleaded not guilty on Monday, the NFL confirmed after speaking with the New Hampshire Supreme Court. Chung refuses to speak on the matter and said he only wants to talk about football and the upcoming game against the New York Giants.
The indictment stems from a charge on July 25, when police found the controlled substance at Chung’s home in Meredith, New Hampshire. He was formally charged in August and was arrested on the day of the find. The indictment charges Chung with the crime of possession, to which the Patriots safety has yet to plead, although it is presumed that he will plead guilty. If sentenced, he will be convicted of a Class B misdemeanor, a lesser of two under the New Hampshire Controlled Drug Act. If convicted, he could face up to four years in prison.
Although the NFL has a max suspension of four games for drug possession, the NFL Player’s Association (NFLPA) website states that the commissioner reserves the right to respond adequately. More to the point, the NFL and the NFLPA take a stance that the health and betterment of the individual athlete on a case-by-case basis is a priority.
“The primary purpose of this Policy is to assist Players who misuse Substances of Abuse. As a result, the implementation and application of the terms of this Policy should first be directed toward ensuring evaluation and treatment,” reads the NFLPA’s Substance Abuse Policy.
As we await the NFL’s response, it will be curious to see how the Patriots deal with this situation. The team has a history of second chances with stars such as Randy Moss, Chad Johnson and most recently Josh Gordon, among many others.
The Patriots responded on Thursday that they are awaiting results of the trial:
“We are aware of the reports regarding Patrick Chung,” the organization said. “We will not be commenting while his judicial proceedings take place.”