Report: Patriots' Patrick Chung indicted on cocaine charge in New Hampshire

New England Patriots safety Patrick Chung. (Getty Images)
New England Patriots safety Patrick Chung. (Getty Images)

New England Patriots safety Patrick Chung was indicted on a charge of possession of cocaine in New Hampshire on Wednesday, according to the Laconia (N.H.) Daily and confirmed by NBC Sports Boston.

A call to the New England Patriots seeking comment was not immediately returned, but the team issued a short statement on Twitter.

More on Patrick Chung’s indictment

The alleged incident took place on June 25, and Chung was indicted on the charge on Aug. 8. According to the Laconia Daily, Chung "did possess or have under his control a quantity of the controlled substance cocaine" in Meredith, but Meredith Police Chief Kevin Morrow told the paper that Chung "was not arrested and there is no [booking] photo to provide."

Cocaine possession is considered a Class B felony, which can carry a potential prison term of 3.5 to seven years.

An indictment does not carry any guilt but is a formal accusation of a felony, which is issued by a grand jury based upon a proposed charge. A court notification indicates that Chung is scheduled to be arraigned at Laconia (N.H.) District Court on Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. Defendants typically are required to appear at their arraignments, although an attorney can request to appear in court on a client’s behalf.

The initial report first appeared in the Laconia Daily in a story that was posted Wednesday at midnight local time.

Chung turned 32 on Monday. According to public records, he has a residence in Meredith — which is about a 2.5-hour drive from Foxborough, Massachusetts. He also has a residence close to the Patriots’ facility.

What else is at stake for Chung

The NFL could suspend Chung under the league’s substance-abuse policy. Players are prohibited “from the illegal use, possession, or distribution of drugs, including but not limited to cocaine.” Those who have not entered the first stage of the policy can sometimes avoid suspension.

But those players who are already in Stage One — names often are note released — can receive at least a four-game suspension, and Chung theoretically could be suspended under the NFL’s personal conduct policy. Typically, the league will let the process be adjudicated before levying any potential discipline.

Chung has no known prior suspensions related to off-field incidents.

Chung has played for the Patriots for nine of his 10 NFL seasons, with one year spent with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2013. He has started the majority of games for New England over the past five seasons, in which they went to four Super Bowls and won three of them.

According to reports from various beat writers, Chung was not at practice on Wednesday. Chung has not appeared in either of the Patriots’ first two preseason games.

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