St. Cloud man gets stay of adjudication in felony drug case

Joseph Paul Panek, 22, St. Cloud, was given a stay of adjudication on one felony fifth degree drug possession charge in Morrison County District Court, Aug. 30, while another felony drug charge was dismissed.

The charges stem from a March 9 traffic stop, which involved a van in which Panek was a passenger.

A trooper conducted a traffic stop on the van near the Highway 10 and Highway 371 split north of Little Falls due to an observation of several occupants not wearing safety belts.

While conducting the traffic stop, the trooper detected a strong odor of marijuana, and Panek admitted that a backpack in the rear of the vehicle belonged to him.

A search of the backpack revealed a quart jar full of marijuana, later weighed at 64 grams, 10 Tramadol pills, which did not contain the defendant’s name, a digital scale, a used joint and a used pipe.

Panek was placed under arrest for possession of the Tramadol, which is a Schedule IV controlled substance, and marijuana.

Panek pleaded guilty to one of the possession charges, as part of a plea agreement to get the stay adjudication and the other charge dismissed, court documents said.

Panek was sentenced to 30 days in jail, though the Morrison County Jail must determine how much time to credit him with since his arrest, March 9.

Panek was also sentenced to five years of supervised probation and was fined $50.