A 51-year-old teacher who worked for the Prior Lake school district faces felony charges for selling and possessing marijuana after 47 pot plants were discovered on her property. Authorities also found drug paraphernalia including scales on the Farmington premises. The woman was an eighth grade physical education teacher who was on medical leave from the Hidden Oaks Middle School. School officials decided that the teacher will be put on administrative leave depending on the results of the criminal investigation.
When officials from Dakota County conducted a search of the woman’s home on Oct. 16, they found a greenhouse containing the marijuana plants as well as a glass jar full of pot, marijuana seeds, and several wooden pipes. The 47 plants weighed in at 550 grams. The teacher was not home at the time of the search.
The woman told officers that she was aware of the plants on her property. She claims that a third party planted the seeds years ago and the plants eventually grew in the greenhouse. She also stated that she was not actively caring for the plants. The woman did admit to using marijuana as a medication, but she did not claim ownership of the drug paraphernalia found in her home. The county attorney stated that there is no evidence the teacher provided any marijuana to students; however, using marijuana is illegal even for medical purposes in Minnesota.
This is not the woman’s first run-in with the law – she is currently on probation for misdemeanor thefts and drunk driving. However, because this is her first drug offense, she may not have to serve time in prison. If she is convicted, she may only be facing a short jail stint, a fine or drug treatment.
Source: startribune.com, “Prior Lake gym teacher faces drug charges over 47 pot plants” Pat Pheifer, Dec. 19, 2013