Whitney Houston Drug Charges Dropped

ByABC News
March 8, 2001, 1:52 PM

March 8 -- Drug charges against Whitney Houston have been dropped, now that a drug counselor confirms the singer is clean.

A judge in Hawaii has dismissed the drug case against the Grammy-winning singer, who was found with less than a half of an ounce of marijuana in her bag last January.

The misdemeanor marijuana possession charge was dropped after prosecutors received a substance-abuse assessment from a counselor in Houston's home state of New Jersey saying the 37-year-old pop star doesn't need treatment for substance abuse. That was one of the conditions of an agreement reached Nov. 3.

The Subject Of Rumors

Houston ran into trouble in January 2000 when her handbag was seized at Hawaii's Keahole-Kona Airport. Prosecutors and Houston's attorneys stipulated at the November hearing that the handbag contained less than half an ounce ofmarijuana in two small plastic bags and three partially smokedmarijuana cigarettes.

Houston and her husband, singer Bobby Brown, hopped a plane to San Francisco before police could arrive to arrest her.

She had faced a possible $1,000 fine and 30 days in jail. But under the November agreement, Judge Joseph Florendo said he would delay acceptance of a no-contest plea for three months, after which he would dismiss the case if the singer had met certain requirements.

Rumors about Houston's health made headlines last year, after she missed a scheduled performance at the Academy Awards ceremony and canceled appearances at the American Music Awards and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Publicly, she has denied having a drug problem, and said she had been ill.

Houston's most recent release Whitney: The Greatest Hits debuted in fifth spot on the Billboard charts last year. She made her feature film debut in the blockbuster The Bodyguard and followed it up with Waiting to Exhale and The Preacher's Wife.