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Archive for Wednesday, January 6, 1993

DA VOWS PROSECUTIONS IF DRUGS FOUND

January 6, 1993

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Drug-sniffing dogs will not be the only weapons deployed in the war on drugs and guns at Lawrence High School, Douglas County Dist. Atty. Jerry Wells said Tuesday afternoon.

School and law enforcement officials "will use additional procedures to detect drugs and weapons," Wells said. He declined to provide details.

The district attorney's comments came during a news conference that followed Tuesday morning's search by four dogs of high school lockers and student and faculty cars.

Wells would not comment on whether anything was found during the nearly two-hour search, but LHS principal Brad Tate said nothing was found "to my knowledge."

Two lockers were opened, but nothing was found in either, he said.

If drugs or weapons are uncovered during a search, students will be prosecuted to the fullest extent, Wells said.

Wells was asked whether a student would be arrested if a search dog detects the odor of beer or marijuana on the student.

"We don't arrest somebody if they just smell," he said. "You could be a little embarrassed if the dog smells beer or pot (on you)."

Wells said he did not want to comment on whether similar search procedures are planned for Lawrence's three junior high schools.

On Tuesday, four dogs searched inside and outside the school, including parking lots. The cost of Tuesday's search was $200 because three dogs from Springfield, Mo., joined the Douglas County sheriff's drug-sniffing dog to conduct the extensive search. If the school district uses only the local dog, there will be no charge.

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