Former Harford councilman facing marijuana charges

Former Harford County Council member Lance Miller, shown during his last year on the council in 2006, has been indicted for alleged possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and related charges.
Former Harford County Council member Lance Miller, shown during his last year on the council in 2006, has been indicted for alleged possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and related charges. (Balrtimore Sun Archives / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Lance Miller, a former eight-year member of the Harford County Council, is facing drug charges after more than two pounds of marijuana were allegedly found in his possession in late September.

Miller, 45, was indicted on four charges by a Harford County grand jury on Nov. 12; the charges weren't unsealed until late last week, according to online court records.


He faces one charge of possession of drugs with intent to distribute, a felony; one misdemeanor charge of possession of marijuana; one felony charge of keeping and maintaining a common nuisance; and one misdemeanor charge of possession of drug paraphernalia, according to the indictment.

Miller stood in front of a Circuit Court Judge Angela Eaves during a bail review hearing in Bel Air Monday morning, dressed in a black-and-white striped county jail uniform, while his attorney, Kevin J. Mahoney of Bel Air, listed the reasons why the former elected official would not flee Harford County if released from jail on bail.


Mahoney said that while his client lives in Pennsylvania, "he has extensive ties to the [area]."

Miller, who grew up in Darlington, was indicted as a result of a Harford County Task Force investigation, according to information provided at the bail hearing and in the indictment.

Assistant State's Attorney H. Scott Lewis told Eaves that Miller is accused of having nearly two-and-a-quarter pounds of marijuana in his possession, which was divided among about seven bags. According to indictment, investigators found the drugs on Sept. 30 at a house in the 2200 block of Old Quaker Bottom Road in Darlington, "which was used for the purposes of the illegal manufacturing, distribution, storage and concealment of controlled dangerous substances."

Miller had told investigators he was not selling the marijuana from his home, according to prosecutor Lewis. The prosecutor continued, however, pointing out that Miller was living in Darlington at the time of the investigation, "which meant he was out in the community distributing the marijuana."


A home in the 1900 block of Trappe Church Road in Darlington is listed in court records as Miller's residence.

Miller graduated from Havre de Grace High School in 1987 and is a 1994 graduate of Towson University, according to his lawyer.

Miller is also a local farmer. He was a Republican member of the County Council for two terms, from 1998 to 2006, representing northern Harford in District D. He is also a former member of the Darlington Community Council, his lawyer said.

Mahoney, who asked Eaves to consider releasing Miller on his own recognizance, noted his client turned himself into Harford County law enforcement last week when he learned about the charges against him.

"He made no effort to flee," Mahoney said.

Lewis, however, noted Miller was on probation for a 2012 DWI charge at the time of the drug investigation.

Miller was charged with negligent driving, two counts of driving under the influence and driving while impaired by alcohol in June 2012.

He pleaded guilty to the DWI charge, and the other three charges were dropped, according to online court records. Miller received two years' probation starting Oct. 12, 2012, according to court records.

Miller was held on $20,000 bail when he was jailed last week on the marijuana charges, and Eaves kept the bail the same. She said he could be released if 10 percent of that amount is paid, and he cannot leave Maryland.

Miller must also either surrender his passport, or if he does not have a passport, cannot apply for one, Eaves added.

Miller's lawyer told the judge that arrangements have been for him to reside with a Harford County woman if he is released on bail. He was released Monday afternoon.

This story is updated with a correction from an earlier version regarding relationship Lance Miller's relationship with the Harford County Farm Bureau. His late father, Jimmy Miller, was president of the organization.

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