The Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office’s Major Crimes Unit is investigating a student at Pickerington Lakeview Junior High School after a large stash of marijuana and prescription pills was found in a school locker.
Pickerington Local School District officials confirmed Wednesday, Oct. 24, a student has been disciplined in connection with an Oct. 11 incident at Lakeview in which more than 60 grams of marijuana and a variety of pre-packaged prescription pills were recovered from that student’s locker.
Citing federal laws regarding student educational and disciplinary records, Pickerington Schools Public Relations Director David Ball declined to say if the student has been suspended or expelled.
“The student has gone through the disciplinary process,” Ball said. “The student was disciplined within the district’s student code of conduct policy.”
Neither the district, nor the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office would disclose the student’s name, age, grade or gender.
Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Unit Cmdr. Dennis Lowe said the student is “approximately 13 years old.”
Lowe said a Lakeview staff member received information a student might be in possession of drugs at school on the morning of Oct. 11.
“A large amount of drugs for a middle schooler was found,” Lowe said. “It was a little over 60 grams of marijuana and there were prescription drugs.
“We’re still waiting for lab results to come back on (the pills).”
The student in question hasn’t been charged with crime, Lowe said.
The sheriff’s office is awaiting forensic lab results to determine the quantity and types of pills found.
“They haven’t been formally charged yet,” Lowe said. “The investigation is still ongoing.
“Once we complete our investigation, we will present evidence to the Fairfield County Prosecutor’s Office.”
Lowe said no other Lakeview students’ lockers were searched and no other students were found with drugs “as a result of this investigation.”
He said although some of the drugs had been “pre-packaged for sale,” officials believe they were found earlier in the school day and it is not believed any had been distributed.
Lowe credited Lakeview staff and a Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office school resource officer for their quick action.
“We really believe this is an isolated incident,” Lowe said. “It’s certainly rare -- I’ve been in law enforcement almost 30 years and this is the first time I’ve seen that.
“But we think the school and the resource officer did a great job of intervening early and preventing those drugs from getting into the school population.”
Lowe said parents of students at Lakeview should feel confident about sending their children to the school.
In a statement about the incident, Ball said:
“Pickerington schools takes the possession, use, and/or sale of illegal substances by our students very seriously, and we are committed to making our schools a safe and secure learning environment.
"We aggressively investigate all situations involving potential illegal substances and work closely with local law enforcement agencies on these matters.
"We are supporting the Fairfield County Sheriff's Office on this ongoing investigation.
“Because the investigation is still open, it is our standard practice to refer all questions to the investigating agency.
“We also do not discuss specific student discipline. I can tell you that in situations involving the possession, use, and/or sale of illegal substances in our schools, students would be subject to discipline as spelled out in our student handbooks and student code of conduct (and athletic handbooks, if relevant). You can see those handbooks at pickerington.k12.oh.us/student-handbooks."