Formal Charges Filed Against LaPorte Councilman


Formal charges have been filed in Porter County Superior Court against a LaPorte County councilman accused of dealing in marijuana.

On Wednesday, April 8, at 11:04 a.m., the Porter County Drug Task Force conducted a controlled narcotics operation involving Matthew E. Bernacchi, 33. In this investigation, Bernacchi allegedly gave an envelope containing a clear plastic baggie of marijuana to an undercover officer. According to court documents, Bernacchi had the envelope in the center console of his truck and gave it to the officer while inside the truck. Once the officer exited the vehicle, detectives from the Porter County Drug Task Force approached the truck and arrested Bernacchi.

The incident occurred in the parking lot at Marshall’s Department Store in Valparaiso, according to court records. The substance was positively identified as marijuana by the officer and was confirmed by a field test. The amount of marijuana confiscated was 3.7 grams.

Bernacchi has been charged with dealing in marijuana, a Class A misdemeanor, and maintaining a common nuisance, a Level 6 felony.