ANDERSON – Parents whose children attend Erskine Elementary School are expected to receive a note Friday alerting them that heroin was found inside the school.
Fox 59 received a copy of the letter to parents via email from the Anderson Community School Corporation. It said in part:
“This communication is being sent to you so that you are informed of the events on Wednesday, September 25, 2013 at Erskine Elementary School and the actions of the Anderson Community School Corporation to protect your child”.
After classes began on Wednesday, a teacher found a small container that looked suspicious in a hallway. Det. Joel Sandefur from the Anderson Police Department said investigators were confident it was a balloon of heroin.
“Very, very shocking. It’s something we don’t expect in our schools—let alone in an elementary school,” Sandefur said.
K-9 units searched classrooms on Wednesday, but didn’t find any other illegal drug. Surveillance video failed to turn up anything suspicious. Sandefur said they need help identifying the person who brought more than a gram of heroin into the school. That person could be charged with dealing because of the amount of heroin detectives found.
“Really, right now, it’s a bit of a mystery as to how it ended up in the elementary school,” Sandefur said.
On Thursday, detectives and school officials searched students’ backpacks and also performed random metal detector checks. They didn’t find anything suspicious. In the letter to parents, school officials said they will continue to monitor student safety.
Sandefur said the county drug task force has noticed an increase of heroin in Madison County and around the state.
“Heroin is a highly addictive narcotic that is harmful. It’s becoming readily available,” Sandefur said, adding that it’s important for parents to talk to their children about the danger of illegal drugs.
Butch Riggins, who lives across the street from the school, said he was surprised to hear the drug was found inside an elementary school.
“That’s pretty bad stuff. Hard stuff, I would think. But it seems you hear about it around this town a lot,” Riggins said.
Anyone with information about this case should call Crime Stoppers at (765) 649-8310.