Weiland Set To Appear In L.A. On Drug Charges

First scheduled court date in Los Angeles case since bench warrant was issued for singer's arrest.

LOS ANGELES -- Stone Temple Pilots singer Scott Weiland is

scheduled to appear at a pre-trial hearing in Los Angeles County Superior

Court on Wednesday (Aug. 12) to answer charges of heroin and

hypodermic-needle possession, stemming from a September 1997 arrest.

This is the first scheduled court date in the 30-year-old singer's Los Angeles

case since a bench warrant was issued for his arrest after he skipped a July 9

hearing. Weiland, who was spotted loitering outside the courtroom on the

morning of that hearing, spent nearly two weeks on the lam before he was

picked up on July 21 and subsequently released the next morning on $250,000

bail.

Weiland, who has been battling drug addiction for years, had missed four

hearings prior to the July 9 court date, according to District Attorney Penny

Schneider. Judge Larry P. Fidler issued the bench warrant for his arrest

following the last missed appearance.

"We're just waiting to see if he appears -- just like everyone else," Sandi

Gibbons, a court spokeswoman, said of Wednesday's hearing.

Robert Kalina, the attorney who is representing Weiland in an unrelated New

York case involving a June 1 arrest for heroin possession and trespassing, said

last week that he expects the singer to attend the Los Angeles hearing. Weiland

was excused from a July 31 hearing in the New York case when Kalina told the

judge that his client was undergoing rehab.

Weiland's attorney for the Los Angeles case, Michael Nasatir, did not return

calls at press time.

The Los Angeles charges stem from a September 1997 arrest in which Weiland

was stopped on a traffic violation and allegedly found with a "personal-use

quantity" of heroin and a hypodermic needle.

Some of Weiland's fans are hoping the singer makes it to the hearing this time.

"That judge is probably still pretty mad at him for skipping court and it's definitely

in his best interest to show up in court Wednesday," Weiland fan Jennifer

Hagey, 20, of Tulsa, Okla., wrote in an e-mail. "Even if he's still in rehab, it

wouldn't hurt to check out for a while and show up at court and fess up to his

legal hot water -- as long as he gets his rear right back to rehab afterward."

STP, whose platinum-selling, Grammy-winning sound ranges from retro pop to

heavy, post-grunge rock, have not released an album since 1996's Tiny

Music ... Songs from the Vatican Gift Shop. The band has been in hiatus

since early 1997.

Meanwhile, Weiland launched his solo career with the album 12 Bar

Blues, which includes the single

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"Barbarella" (RealAudio excerpt).