BENTON - The state on Monday dropped charges filed last spring against a
man stopped on Interstate 30 with nearly 80 pounds of marijuana. Charges
against Robert Scott Blevins, 38, were dropped because of a U.S. Supreme
Court decision that rendered the evidence against Blevins inadmissible,
said Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Wes Bradford. Blevins was charged with
possession of marijuana with intent to deliver. He was stopped by Saline
County deputies on April 27 during a drug interdiction road block.

Court documents allege that a duffel bag containing more than 79 pounds of
marijuana was found in the truck Blevins was driving. An affidavit filed in
the case stated that local deputies working with a team of K-9 trainers
from Missouri placed a sign reading "Drug Check Point 1/4 mile" on the
eastbound lanes of Interstate 30 at milemarker 114. Blevins allegedly took
the first exit past the sign and was detained on the access road.

A dog trained to detect drugs alerted deputies to the back of the truck,
where the duffel bag was found.

A November decision from U.S. Supreme Court invalidated police searches
during traffic checkpoints for the express purpose of drug eradication. Had
the checkpoint been conducted for license and registration checks or
detection of those driving while intoxicated, the purpose would have
outweighed the Fourth Amendment protection against search and seizure,
Bradford said.

Blevins returned to his home in Dallas after the brief hearing Monday in
Saline County Circuit Court.


Newshawk: John Markes
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jan 2001
Source: Benton Courier (AR)
Copyright: 2001 Benton Courier
Contact: news@bentoncourier.com
Address: 321 N. Market St., Benton, AR 72015
Fax: (501) 315-1230
Website: http://www.bentoncourier.com/
Author: Karon Gregory, Courier Staff Writer