Archive for Thursday, September 28, 2006

No charges yet from drug probe at Baldwin High

September 28, 2006

Douglas County Attorney Charles Branson is still looking into the alleged use of illegally obtained prescription drugs by Baldwin High School students.

"He's still reviewing it and considering it," said Baldwin Police Chief Mike McKenna, who met with Branson Tuesday afternoon. "I talked to him in his office and he's still looking at it."

McKenna took the reports from the investigation he and his officers did following the allegations that fewer than 10 students took an Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder drug prior to the Sept. 8 football game at Paola. The investigation started Sept. 11 and Baldwin School District administrators also participated.

McKenna said there's no doubt in his mind as to charges against those that distributed the ADHD medicine.

"The law is very clear on the distribution of any sort of drugs on school grounds," said McKenna. "If a kid is caught handing out any drug it's a mandatory 160-day expulsion from school.

"There shouldn't be any ifs, ands or buts about it," he said. "If drugs are handed out, action should be swift."

School district officials have declined to discuss the case, except by Bob Bezek, school district attorney. Bezek has declined to address any individual cases involved, citing privacy laws. Bezek has acknowledged the investigation and said appropriate action has been taken.

McKenna said laws protecting children from drugs and violence are clear.

"That's the law," he said. "I believe every child in America has the right to safety at school from drugs and violence.

"For some of them, it's their only safe haven from drugs and violence," said McKenna.

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