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High school disciplinary officer arrested on drug charges

Sometimes, a bizarre twist of facts, with no plausible explanation, emerges in the investigation of a reported crime in New Hampshire and elsewhere. In one case, the element of mystery arose early when a high school's disciplinary officer and dean of students called police to report finding a bundle of hypodermic needles that she later misplaced. Police came to the school and conducted a search, only to end up filing drug charges against the dean of students herself.

When the authorities searched, they found heroin in the dean's office and three varieties of anabolic steroids in her car. Police handcuffed the woman while classes were taking place and charged her with four felonies of possessing a controlled substance. The woman was released on bail, whereupon she submitted her resignation to school authorities.

None of this explains why she would call the police to report finding hypodermic needles and allow them to search her room where she held heroin. The story has a break in logic that appears to be inconsistent with the knowing possession of illegal drugs. Surely, a guilty person, for example, would have eliminated any illegal contraband from her office prior to, or contemporaneously with, the call to the police.

These are all part of the bizarre facts of the case, and they set the stage for a special approach by defense counsel. It is likely that counsel will stress the factual inconsistencies that go against a guilty mind and criminal intent by the defendant. The call to police in itself would have been a tremendously risky move that a guilty person would not normally contemplate. There are several related questions that will require a detailed investigation of the drug charges by counsel, not the least of which will be whether police violated the woman's constitutional rights by searching her car, apparently without a search warrant and possibly in violation of New Hampshire and federal law.  

Source:, "How N.H. police came to find heroin in high school dean's office", Emma Brown, April 5, 2016

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