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Man who allegedly took heroin into Westmoreland courthouse gets probation

| Saturday, Aug. 9, 2014, 1:21 a.m.

A Penn Township man who allegedly took 13 stamp bags of heroin into the Westmoreland County Courthouse last week reached an agreement with prosecutors that calls for him to be put in a probationary program, his attorney said.

Scott Matthew Burbidge, 27, will be placed on probation without verdict — a program for offenders without a previous criminal record — for a year, attorney Anthony Bompiani said.

Burbidge had been scheduled to appear before Greensburg District Judge James Albert on Thursday for a preliminary hearing on charges of possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.

As part of his probation, Burbidge will have to undergo a drug and alcohol evaluation and take part in any designated treatment programs, Bompiani said.

A Westmoreland County judge must accept Burbidge into the program, which will allow him to keep his record clean if he successfully completes it.

About 1:40 p.m. July 31, Burbidge set off the metal detector at the main entrance to the courthouse in Greensburg, county park police said.

Officer William Myers said he found the individual doses of heroin, called stamp bags, after he waved a security wand over Burbidge's front pants pocket. Burbidge removed a white container, with heroin inside, from his pocket, police said.

In addition, police said they found five empty stamp bags, rubber bands that can be used as tourniquets to inject heroin, cotton swabs, three hypodermic needles and $475 on Burbidge.

Police said they found 8 milligrams of Suboxone — a drug used to treat narcotics addiction — in Burbidge's wallet. He did not have a prescription for the drug, authorities said.

Burbidge was en route to get a gun permit at the sheriff's department when he was stopped by park police, authorities said.

Bob Stiles is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-6622 or bstiles@tribweb.com.

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