SALEM — A Salem man who recently earned certification as a pharmacy technician is facing a charge of marijuana possession with intent to distribute following a raid at his apartment early yesterday.

Todd McDermott, 21, of 21 Harbor St., Salem, pleaded not guilty to that charge, as well as charges of violating the drug laws in a school zone and possessing a stun gun, during his arraignment in Salem District Court.

He was being held on $750 bail.

Police said they obtained a search warrant following an investigation and ultimately found 20.7 grams of marijuana.

While that is less than 1 ounce, an amount that has been decriminalized, police say it was packaged in a manner consistent with being sold, allowing them to bring a criminal charge instead of writing him a ticket.

McDermott's lawyer, Leslie Salter, suggested that the amount is not enough to prove intent to distribute and urged Judge Robert Brennan to release her client.

She told the judge that McDermott recently obtained certification as a pharmacy technician and has been working at an area Walgreens.

McDermott is due back in court on June 13.

Courts reporter Julie Manganis may be reached at 978-338-2521 or

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