Jefferson County District Court Judge David Holton granted former U of L student and football player Cameron Polk the opportunity to avoid jail time on Nov. 14.
On Oct. 7, the Fishers, Ind. freshman received a citation at a Cardinal Towne apartment while smoking marijuana, and was found with a safe containing marijuana, hydrocodone pills and codeine. $418.20 was seized from him by police. The citation came months after cheerleader Dani Cogswell died of a drug overdose in Polk’s apartment.
Polk was initially charged with trafficking controlled substances within 1000 feet of a school, but his charges were amended after he pled guilty to trafficking less than eight ounces of marijuana. This is a common practice in criminal law.
Under Kentucky law KRS 218.1411, the initial charge is a Class D felony. Polk pled guilty to a Class A misdemeanor as a first-time offender, according to KRS 218A.1421.
According to district court records, Polk was sentenced to a two-year conditional discharge. According to KRS 533.020, this is the maximum conditional discharge for a misdemeanor.
A conditional discharge is similar to probation, but does not require a probation officer. Under KRS 533.030, the defendant is given certain conditions which the court, “in its discretion, deems reasonably necessary to insure that the
defendant will lead a law-abiding life or to assist him to do so.”
If the defendant were to commit another crime, he or she could have the conditional discharge revoked a receive a higher sentence such as jail time. Much of the conditional discharge law is up to the court’s discretion.
In addition to the conditional discharge, Polk had to pay $135 in court fees, and the $418.20 seized from him was given to ULPD and the Jefferson County Attorney.
According to U of L spokesman Mark Hebert, Polk is no longer a student at U of L. He was also removed from the football team. Due to federal privacy laws, it is unknown if the university took disciplinary action against him, such as expulsion. An open records request is currently pending.
According to the U of L Code of Student Conduct, “a student who has been expelled from the University may apply for special consideration for readmission after a period of not less than five years.”
The code of conduct also outlines an appeals process in which the Vice President for Student Affairs could reverse the decision of the Dean of Students.
Polk and his lawyer could not be reached for comment.