Franklin Community 8th graders face possible drug charges

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FRANKLIN, Ind. – Three 8th grade students face possible drug charges after an investigation that resulted in three of the students being arrested last week. Four more 8th graders face possible suspension or expulsion from school.

According to Franklin Police and Franklin Community Schools officials, the investigation started when a teacher at Franklin Community Middle School noticed a student acting strangely.

“A little bit lethargic, stumbling, possibly showing some signs of intoxication,” said Franklin Police Chief Tim O’Sullivan.

School officials and police launched an investigation that resulted in one 8th grader being arrested on a preliminary charge of Dealing a Schedule III Narcotic.
Two more arrests came later.

“The following day, the officer met with some students and their parents,” O’Sullivan said. “Subsequently, another student was arrested for dealing, and another student for possession.”

The three students were taken to Juvenile Detention and have since been released. In addition to the three students arrested, police believe four more 8th graders took the drugs, but were not arrested.

O’Sullivan could not specifically say what drugs were being sold and shared, but examples of Schedule III Narcotics include Vicodin and a Codine/Tylenol mix. Investigators believe about 20 pills came from a single source.

“I believe it was brought from one of the students’ homes,” O’Sullivan said.

Franklin Community Schools Superintendent, Dr. David Clendening, said he could not remember such a case at this age level.

“We have not seen this, like this,” Clendening said. “But I think, in general, you’re hearing more about it.”

Prescription drug abuse is a growing problem across the nation. Police and School officials try to remind parents and other family members to keep a close eye on their own prescriptions at home. Even if that means counting the pills in your prescritpion bottle.

“If those things happen with prescription drugs, it’s okay to count them to make sure,” Clendening said.

According to the Franklin Community Middle School handbook, all seven students involved in the case face possible suspension or expulsion.

The Johnson County Prosecutors office will decide whether juvenile drug charges will be filed against the three students who were arrested.