CANTON — Misdemeanor charges against an Ogdensburg man accused of manufacturing methamphetamine out of his home have been dismissed by St. Lawrence County Court’s judge.
Mark A. Brossoit, 51, of 821 Main St., was indicted on April 24 on charges of third-degree unlawful manufacturing of methamphetamine, a class D felony, and seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument, both class A misdemeanors.
Mr. Brossoit was arrested on March 1 following the execution of a search warrant on his home, where police allegedly discovered lab equipment consisting of a gas generator, funnels and pliers, solvents including Coleman fuel, catalysts including lithium batteries and reagents including muriatic acid and drain cleaning chemicals.
Police said he also had an unspecified amount of methamphetamine and a hypodermic needle.
But Mr. Brossoit’s attorney, Public Defender Stephen D. Button, challenged the legal sufficiency of evidence presented to the grand jury, arguing that prosecutors failed to prove that the searched premises were the defendant’s residence. And he said opinions offered by police about the proof of methamphetamine were insufficient foundation as to the meth manufacturing and testing process.
In his June 18 decision, County Judge Jerome J. Richards ruled that the information about Mr. Brossoit being in possession of a hypodermic needle was based “entirely on incompetent hearsay” from authorities executing the search warrant.
“‘… Family members told us he threw something in the bedroom and we immediately found … in the corner a package of hypodermic needles, unused,’” Judge Richards said, quoting testimony from a Homeland Security special agent who was working with St. Lawrence County Drug Task Force members.
No family members testified.
Judge Richards added that testimony pertaining to Mr. Brossoit’s wallet, which allegedly contained a small quantity of meth, was also based “entirely on incompetent hearsay.” Judge Richards ruled that, although the wallet was not found on Mr. Brossoit, no details were provided as to where the wallet was found, nor was there proof that the wallet belonged to him.
Judge Richards ruled that the evidence did not support the charges of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument and he dismissed the charges, allowing prosecutors to re-present those dismissed counts to a different grand jury if they wish to do so.
The motion to dismiss the felony count against Mr. Brossoit for legally insufficient evidence was denied because officers who testified had specialized training concerning the manufacturing of methamphetamine, thereby establishing a sufficient basis for opinions about the process and the components and the equipment needed for manufacture, the judge ruled.