Authorities have dismissed charges against a Severn man who was accused of letting teen-agers drink and smoke marijuana in his home.
Edward Earl Cordova, 47, whose 11-year-old son, Edward Eric, had traces of alcohol and drugs in his system when he was killed in a car accident in April, was charged two months after the fatal accident with possession of marijuana, contributing to the condition of a child and maintaining a common nuisance, but prosecutors dismissed the charges Monday.
"We chose not to move forward on that specific case," Kristin Riggin, spokeswoman for the state's attorney's office, said yesterday. She would not say why the charges were dismissed. The move does not stop authorities from bringing charges later.
Police began an investigation of the house after neighbors in the Gambrills community where Cordova lived at the time of the accident complained of teen drug traffic in the house. The investigation intensified after the boy died April 26.
The boy was thrown from a car that hit a tree during an afternoon joy ride on a curving Crownsville road that teen-agers call the "End of the World."
ZTC The boy's father said at the time that teen-agers gave the bend the name because if a car veered off the road there, "you go off the end of the world."
Cordova moved to the 7900 block of McNeilin Way after the accident, telling neighbors that the Gambrills home reminded him of his son.
When police searched the one-story ranch house in Severn for more than an hour in June, they found two teen-agers smoking marijuana in the basement and recovered a bag of the drug, according to court records.
Police also found letters in Cordova's bedroom and in his 14-year-old daughter's bedroom that said Cordova allowed his daughter to smoke marijuana and sometimes smoked it with her, records show.
Cordova, his daughter, and David Carroll Harrison, 18, who is not related to Cordova but lived at the address, were arrested on drug charges.
Cordova said yesterday the arrest damaged his credibility. He blamed the drugs on Harrison and said he had an idea his daughter was smoking marijuana, but not in the house.
"My reputation, my integrity has been violated by the news media and I can't repair it," Cordova said. "People won't talk to me. People won't have anything to do with me anymore. Even after you print your story in the paper, parents still won't trust me."