Lawyers for New England Patriots player Patrick Chung and New Hampshire prosecutors have pushed forward his next court date in a cocaine possession case until after the National Football League season ends, according to court records made public Friday.
Chung was indicted by Belknap County prosecutors on a charge of possession of a controlled drug, stemming from a June 25 visit by police to Chung’s home in Meredith, N.H.
Chung was not at home when police arrived. No one else has been charged.
In court papers, defense lawyers and Belknap County prosecutors said the rescheduling was jointly agreed upon and may lead to a resolution of the case. The delay, which has been approved by a judge, is the first sought in the case against Chung, according to court papers.
“The purpose of this continuance is to allow the parties additional time to exchange information that is relevant to a possible disposition of this case and to present legal arguments relating to the potential suppression issues involved in this case,’’ the prosecution and defense said in a joint statement.
The next court date is now Jan. 3, one day before the NFL playoffs begin. The Patriots regular season ends with a home game against the Miami Dolphins on Dec. 29.
A trial date has been set for March.
The Globe has reported that Chung faces potential punishment from NFL commissioner Roger Goodell under the league’s substance abuse policy, which was jointly negotiated by the NFL owners and NFL Players Association. But Chung will probably avoid punishment during the 2019 season.
The substance abuse policy states that punishment does not take place until a player is found guilty in court or admits wrongdoing.