Man tied to Pozonsky case charged with dealing cocaine

December 6, 2013

A former Washington County man whose cocaine trafficking charge was erroneously dismissed by former judge Paul Pozonsky in 2011 was arrested Thursday night on charges in connection with two other drug cases.

Kristopher Strejcek, 27, of Pitcairn, is charged with drug possession with intent to deliver and possession of a controlled substance after state police said he sold 3.3 grams of cocaine worth about $200 to a confidential informant in Washington June 21, 2011.

Police said that happened around the same time that Pozonsky, who is now accused of stealing cocaine from police evidence, dismissed similar charges against Strejcek in a case in which Washington County sheriff’s deputies said they found cocaine inside a bathroom wall of the Canton Township house where he was staying in July 2010. Pozonsky ruled in November 2011 that a deputy went “beyond his authority” in his search that netted two large bags of cocaine and paraphernalia in the bathroom.

That ruling was overturned by the state Superior Court in February, and the case was reassigned to Washington County Judge John DiSalle. That drug trafficking case against Strejcek has been on hold for several months as his Pittsburgh defense attorney, Lee Rothman, asked multiple times for pretrial conferences to be delayed.

Strejcek was free on $50,000 bond before Pozonsky suppressed the drug evidence allegedly found at the Canton Township home and dismissed the charges.

Authorities arrested Strejcek Thursday night while executing a warrant, and District Judge Valarie Costanzo arraigned him on the more recent charges.

State police in Belle Vernon, who filed the charges in June, could not be reached for comment, and it was not clear where he was arrested. Strejcek is currently in Washington County jail on $20,000 bond and faces a Dec. 19 preliminary hearing in that case. He also faces similar drug charges filed by Canonsburg police for an incident that allegedly occurred Nov. 29, 2012, according to court records filed Friday morning. His bond was set at $50,000 for that case, and he has a preliminary hearing scheduled Dec. 11 before District Judge David Mark.

Pozonsky resigned from his position as a Washington County judge in June 2012 and was charged May 23 of this year with conflict of interest, obstruction of justice, theft, misapplying government property and possession of a controlled substance.

Strejcek’s original case was included in the court documents against Pozonsky in which investigators allege that several envelopes with cocaine evidence were tampered with by someone who had access to them. Multiple bags of cocaine were tested again at the state crime lab and were determined to contain less of the drug or to contain a substance that was not cocaine – in one case, baking soda. Found in an envelope bearing Strejcek’s name were two bags sealed with cellophane tape, as opposed to evidence tape, containing a white substance that was retested and found not to be cocaine.

Mike Jones has been a news reporter since 2005, covering crime, state and municipal government, education and energy. In addition to working at the Observer-Reporter, he also has spent time at the Charleston (W.Va.) Daily Mail and He holds a journalism degree from West Virginia University.

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