Documents: State Police Pay $195K in Soap, Cocaine Mix-Up

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) — Court documents show the Pennsylvania State Police have paid $195,000 to settle a lawsuit filed by a New York man who spent 29 days behind bars after troopers mistook homemade soap for cocaine.

Alexander Bernstein’s attorney, Joshua Karoly, tells The Morning Call his client also has settled claims against Safariland LLC, the company that produced the allegedly faulty drug test that troopers used during a November 2013 traffic stop. Details of that settlement weren’t available.

State police and Safariland didn’t return messages seeking comment Thursday.

Bernstein was a passenger in a Mercedes-Benz police pulled over for speeding near Allentown. Troopers smelled marijuana, searched the car and found packages the driver said was homemade soap, but tested as cocaine. Lab tests later showed it was soap.

photo: Getty Images

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4 comments
  1. Another waste of time, money and reputation in the failed war on drugs. If it had been real cocaine, and it had made it to market, less damage would have been done than what happened in this fiasco.

  2. Hold up they smelled marijuana but found soap instead and as we know field test kits pop false positive %70 of the time. Hahaha dumbasses

  3. Meanwhile in Colorado they have a town in panic because the water is supposedly tainted with thc because a dumbass used a field test strip from a water fountain. Funny cos it done at a drug testing facility

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