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Officer Claims He Brought Home Pounds of Marijuana to Train His K-9

Credit: AP

A police officer in Richmond, California, is taking flack after it was discovered that he'd stashed up to five pounds of marijuana in his home, as well as apparently failing to file dozens of police reports, the Contra Costa Times reported Wednesday.

But while veteran K-9 officer Joe Avila was placed on administrative leave — paid leave, that is — in September as his case was investigated, he probably won't have charges filed against him.

Contra Costa County's chief public defender, Robin Lipetzky said the evidence piled up against Avila just doesn't seem strong enough to get a conviction.

The investigation got kicked off in January, when internal affairs investigators started trying to figure out why Avila hadn't been filing police reports — 37 missing reports in all.

One of those reports, the Times reported, involved Avila picking up 4 to 5 pounds of marijuana at a local UPS.

When questioned, Avila apparently told investigators he'd used two pounds of marijuana to train his K-9 dog; only after further questioning, the Times reported, did Avila admit to having the rest of the marijuana, which investigators later located at his home.

Avila may or may not remain on Richmond's police force, and it seems Richmond is hunkering down in regards to his case, the Times reported, with the city's human resources department passing the buck to the city attorney's office...which didn't return calls about the case.

Avila's case — and the fact that he probably won't face any drug charges — has attracted national attention.

Follow Zach Noble (@thezachnoble) on Twitter

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