Terry Nolan, 55, pleaded guilty to use of cocaine (double penalty) in Muskegon County Circuit Court on Tuesday. His license to practice law has been suspended since his arrest in February.
Nolan is free on bond pending next month's sentencing.
Nolan’s attorney, Ed Anderson of Muskegon, said Nolan’s case was scheduled to go to trial today, but his client instead pleaded guilty.
“There were no deals, no promises, no reductions,” Anderson said. “Terry’s dealing with it head-on and accepting responsibility.”
Nolan was charged with the high-court, double-penalty misdemeanor because he has a previous drug conviction, Anderson said. This doubles the potential penalty from a maximum of one year in jail to up to two years in prison.
Nolan's law license was pulled for several years after a 2003 drug conviction, Anderson said.
Anderson said the State Bar will decide on discipline after the sentencing for the criminal charge.
“It could be as little as a reprimand or as severe as disbarment," he said, but it will most likely be a license suspension.
The interagency West Michigan Enforcement Team arrested Nolan in the early morning of Feb. 26.
“He was arrested after a traffic stop that led to a search of a house,” Muskegon County Prosecuting Attorney D.J. Hilson said for an earlier story. “Mr. Nolan was found in it (and) subsequently arrested."
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