PORTLAND - Portland Trail Blazers Damon Stoudamire and Rasheed Wallace have pleaded innocent to misdemeanor marijuana possession charges related to a traffic stop in Washington state last month.
Stoudamire entered his plea in documents filed Wednesday in Lewis County District Court, according to his Portland-based attorney, Steve Houze. He and Wallace had been scheduled to enter pleas Friday on the charges.
Wallace also pleaded innocent, Lewis County prosecutor Jeremy Randolph said. A pretrial hearing will likely be set for January, depending on the attorneys' schedule.
Wallace's Seattle-based attorney, David Bukey, did not return messages.
After workouts Thursday morning at the Trail Blazers' practice facility, Stoudamire said he could not talk about the matter. Wallace did not comment.
Stoudamire already has legal troubles related to the Feb. 23 discovery of marijuana at his Lake Oswego home.
Stoudamire and his father were charged with felony possession of marijuana, but the charges against his father were dropped. In August, a judge declared the search illegal and rejected a prosecution request to use the marijuana as evidence. That ruling has been appealed.
Late last month Wallace, Stoudamire and driver Edward Smith of Portland were stopped on Interstate 5 north of Centralia, Wash., for speeding. The group was returning after a Trail Blazers game against the Seattle SuperSonics.
A search of the vehicle turned up a small amount of marijuana, police said. Misdemeanor possession is punishable with a fine of up to $1,000 and up to three months in jail.
Afterward, Stoudamire and Wallace appeared in a brief news conference, where they apologized for the incident.
Stoudamire's plea comes the same week that prosecutors in Oregon's Washington County decided not to pursue felony domestic abuse charges against Blazers' forward Ruben Patterson.
Patterson's wife Shannon called police to their home on Nov. 25 alleging she had been assaulted by her husband. Patterson was taken into custody and later released on bail posted by a teammate.
On Monday, Shannon Patterson went to Washington County prosecutors and said she did not wish the prosecution to proceed with the case. District Attorney Bob Hermann announced a day later that Patterson would not face formal charges because of a lack of evidence.
The dropped charges didn't stop the Blazers from taking their own action against Patterson. Late Thursday, the team levied a $100,000 fine against him for conduct detrimental to the organization and the city of Portland.
"Each of our players needs to understand that there is a standard of conduct that they are expected to maintain as members of our team and this community," team general manager Bob Whitsitt said.
Patterson apologized to Blazers' fans in his first public comments, made before Portland was routed 103-88 by the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night.
"It's a family matter, and I'm going to take care of it and move on," Patterson said. "Everybody knows I'm not a bad person."