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Courtney Pleads Not Guilty to Drug Charges

Courtney Pleads Not Guilty to Drug Charges
Colin Knight/JPI

05/03/2004 AT 09:00 AM EDT

On the same day Michael Jackson was arraigned in Santa Maria, Calif., and most of the Jayson Williams verdicts were delivered in New Jersey, a subdued Courtney Love also entered the halls of justice for her arraignment in Beverly Hills.

A subdued Love pleaded not guilty Friday to two drug possession charges, for the prescription painkillers oxycodone and hydrocodone. She could face up to three years and eight months in prison if convicted.

But Love's lawyer painted an optimistic picture, saying that the former Hole singer, 39, had prescriptions for the painkillers and that the case would likely not go to trial, reports Reuters.

"We are in legal possession. I don't see this going to trial. These are not banned substances. They were prescription (drugs) that she was in legal possession of," Love's lawyer Michael Rosenstein told reporters after the brief hearing.

He added: "I have confidence in the evidence and in my client. I would imagine today will be her last day in court."

Even so, Judge Elden Fox set a date of June 4 for a trial to start.

Dressed in a black trench coat, black pants and a gray top, Love, 39, who's engaged in some colorful exchanges with Judge Fox in the past, sat quietly and read a book inside the courtroom, reports the Associated Press.

Asked if she agreed with the not-guilty plea entered by her lawyer, she answered, "Yes." Outside, she did not speak to reporters after the hearing.

Love's brush with the law stems from an incident last October when she was arrested outside the Los Angeles home of her ex-boyfriend, music producer James Barber, on suspicion of breaking windows and being under the influence.

Though Barber did not press vandalism charges against her, Love faces a separate trial for disturbing the peace over that incident.

On other legal fronts, Love also faces assault charges stemming from an altercation in a New York nightclub in March.

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