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Investigators Probe How Fifth-Graders Got Marijuana

Posted May 10, 2007
Updated May 11, 2007

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— How and why did students at a Sanford elementary school get marijuana?

That's the question authorities are trying to figure out after a school resource officer, last week, filed juvenile petitions against four fifth-grade students for possessing marijuana. One was also charged with intent to sell and deliver.

"It is a rarity in Lee County (to see children this young charged with drug possession)," Lee County schools Superintendent Dr. James McCormick said. "We may have had other incidents. We're talking about some stems and seeds -- something that obviously came from someone beyond the school district."

Classmates reported the students last week, one week after students took part in a drug-education program. The school took disciplinary action but cannot disclose what it was.

"It's a credit to the kids that they came forward and were brave enough to tell that their classmates had something illegal," school resource officer Darla Cole said.

It's not uncommon that drugs have turned up among young children. According to the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 113 incidents of drugs in elementary and middle schools were reported for the 2005-2006 school year. Thirty-six incidents were reported in pre-kindergarten through fifth grades.

"The problem starts at home ," said parent K. J. Fox. "I just wonder how (the students) could get to school without a parent checking them before they got all the way to school."

Officials said the amount of marijuana was small -- a misdemeanor -- and that a juvenile counselor will review the cases to see if the students should go to court or get diverted. Cole said that would mean something like counseling, community service or restitution.

26 Comments

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  • buck121794 May 12, 2007

    Why don't the school system and the authorities go ahead and blame the parent's as they should hold the respnsibility.

  • salut2daking May 11, 2007

    Just who was these kids trying to sell to and did the sell any and did they find money on them. Ask them where the money was supposed to be taken to.

  • wildatheart99 May 11, 2007

    I HAVE A 4 YEAR OLD, AND I WOULD BEAT HER TAIL AND THE ADULT OR KID THAT SHE GOT THE DRUGS FROM. THESE KIDS JUST TOOK A CLASS ON DRUGS, SO THEY KNEW THAT DRUGS WERE BAD. HOPE THE BEST FOR THE KIDS. LETS ALL HELP OUR COMMUNITY. WHAT DO THEY MEAN PRE-K? SO SAD!

  • 1crazygirl May 11, 2007

    The parents of these children need to be held responsible for this. They should be locked up and have to go before a judge in order to get out. There kids should be removed from the home until it can be determined that it is a safe enviroment.

  • peppercorns May 11, 2007

    just look at the parents and you will see where the kids got it from ...

  • North Carolina Native May 11, 2007

    ergggggg - that's a great start but the preachers son was the wildest one in the bunch of boys i knew way back when.

    PS Pre-K????

  • erggggg May 11, 2007

    these kids need some good christian upbringing, thats all

  • buck121794 May 11, 2007

    tbajr-You are a genius! Marijuana less harmful than aspirin? That is why weed is illegal and aspirin is not.

  • tbajr May 11, 2007

    No they shouldn't have had it at school. These youg kids are
    curious, it is in all kids nature. We are talking about marij-
    uana, something which has been scientifically and medically
    proven to be less dangerous than aspirin, NO these kids should
    not be sent to court!!!!!!

  • Notinitforthemoney May 11, 2007

    Did I see a "rarity" mentioned in this story, not in today's age most gangs selling marijuana use kids between the ages of 11-15 to push their drug sales. Because they see it as if these kids get caught with it, they will get a slap on the wrist. It will only be time before you start seeing a lot more of these cases.

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