Former Mobile County Commissioner Stephen Nodine found himself back in a Baldwin County courtroom this morning for a bond hearing related to his arrest last week for a probation violation. Nodine allegedly tested positive for opiates and marijuana during a random drug screening Nov. 6 and was observed outside of the state without permission at the Superdome in New Orleans Dec. 6.
At the satellite courthouse in Fairhope today, Judge C. Joseph Norton set Nodine’s bond revocation hearing for Jan. 13. Nodine’s bond was set at $1,000 cash, a $500 bond per probation violation.
According to attorney Pascal Bruijn, Nodine was given permission to travel to New Orleans on Thursday, Dec. 3 to pursue an employment opportunity and was instructed to return that day. However, Nodine was observed by a probation officer outside the Mercedes Benz Superdome Dec. 6, when the Saints were hosting the Carolina Panthers.
“(Nodine) goes there on a regular basis because he has friends and family there,” Bruijn said. “He asks permission to go every month, but apparently he failed to do so this time.”
The month before, Nodine tested positive for opiates and marijuana at his monthly probation meeting in Mobile. Nodine claimed he used a friend’s medication to fight off an illness. He also tested positive for marijuana, which Nodine admitted to consuming brownies laced with the drug.
Bruijn said the two violations carry a maximum punishment of 90 days each violation, so Nodine could face up to 180 days imprisonment.
Bruijn said he expects Nodine’s sentence to be between 30 and 90 days. The attorney said he will advise Nodine to remain in jail until the hearing.
“My advice is usually to stay in and build up some time,” Bruijn said. “You are going to spend some time in jail anyway, so I advise him to build up some time served. If his family wants to spring for it, he can get out this afternoon. But my advice is always to sit in there and wait and have the time build up for you.”
Nodine’s probation revocation hearing will be Jan. 13 at 9 a.m. at the Baldwin County Courthouse in Bay Minette. He will be required to consent to a drug screening the day of the hearing.
Nodine was booked into the Mobile County Jail Dec. 11, just 14 months after he was freed from a two-year sentence in Baldwin County for perjury, ethics violations and harassment charges. Previously, he served 15 months in a federal prison after pleading guilty to being a drug user in possession of a firearm.
Bruijn would not speculate on Nodine’s political future in light of Nodine’s recent expression of interest in running for Congress.