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Raid Nets Norwalk's 1st Minor Marijuana Infraction

NORWALK, Conn. -- The target of an early morning drug raid escaped arrest Thursday. Norwalk Police say that although the suspect had marijuana and a scale in his home, under recent legislation he had simply committed an infraction.

Dwayne Johnson, 19, of 51B Elmwood Ave. was given a summons for less than 0.4 ounce of marijuana and for possession of drug paraphernalia. The total fine was $185, $150 for possession of less than one ounce of marijuana (first offense) and $35 for drug paraphernalia.

Officer Mark Suda said 10 officers executed the search and seizure warrant at 6 a.m. and found Johnson in possession of what is commonly called a "roach" –the end of a joint–the scale and some .380 caliber bullets.

On June 30, Gov. Dannel Malloy signed P.A. 11-71, S.B. 1014, An Act Concerning the Penalty for Certain Non-Violent Drug Offenses, which decriminalized small amounts of marijuana, effective July 1. The police citation logs show that two other people have been given an infraction for possession of less than 4 ounces since then. The fine for that is $1,000. Johnson is the first to get the minimal penalty.

Suda said officers simply eyeballed the roach and used their experience to estimate how much pot it contained.

Also on the police blotter:

? A New York man who had been swearing loudly near children playing at Calf Pasture Beach was arrested Thursday, police said. Seth Troche, 22, of 175 W. 126 St, New York, N.Y., was charged with breach of peace second-degree and criminal mischief third-degree. Bond was $500.

Four police cruisers responded to the beach for the 4:26 p.m. report of a fight. Police say Troche and his girlfriend were arguing near the Sounds Fun playground, and numerous parents complained about the loud profanity. He was told, "You can't yell in public in the presence of small children."

Troche also broke his girlfriend's umbrella, police said, which resulted in the criminal mischief charge.

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