Winona: No Drug Charge, Trial Date Set

10/16/2002 at 01:00 PM EDT

Winona Ryder is off the hook as far as drug possession charges are concerned, but she will still go to trial on allegations that she stole nearly $6,000 worth of merchandise from a Saks Fifth Avenue store in Beverly Hills.

A day after the judge postponed her case because she was a no-show, the "Girl, Interrupted" star, 30, was back in court Wednesday as Beverly Hills Superior Court Judge Elden Fox dropped her drug charge and ordered an Oct. 24 trial date for her shoplifting case, Reuters reports.

The actress, outfitted in a cream-colored coat and dress, kept silent during the 10-minute hearing and was quickly escorted away afterwards. Her lead attorney, Mark Geragos, told reporters that his client looked forward to clearing her name and declared, "I don't go to trial unless I think I can win."

The jurist granted the prosecution's request to drop a felony drug possession charge against Ryder, who allegedly was found with two tablets of the prescription painkiller Oxycodone at the time of her arrest last December.

Geragos has maintained that she had a valid prescription for the pills, which "were prescribed for her by a doctor for a broken arm," he said. After receiving a sworn statement from a defense witness, prosecutors agreed to drop the charge.

To the reporters on Wednesday, Geragos described Ryder's spirits as high. "Winona has expressed to me that she wants to go to trial. She wants to put this behind her."

Ryder will be tried on the felony charges of grand theft, commercial burglary and vandalism. She has pleaded not guilty to all three counts, which carry a maximum three-year prison sentence.

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