Calif. Principal Busted For Selling Drugs on Gay Dating Site
The principal of an elementary school in California was arrested and charged for six drug counts after police contacted him through a gay dating website, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
Last Thursday, the former principal of Montague Elementary School in Santa Clara, Calif., Eric Lewis was arrested and charged with furnishing methamphetamine and GHB, a date-rape drug, to an undercover officer, who works for the Santa Clara County Drug Task Force.
Santa Clara is located in the center of Silicon Valley and is about 45 miles south of San Francisco.
The officer who contacted Lewis, 42, did so through a gay dating website after authorities received a tip that the principal might be involved in drugs.
According to the U.K. tabloid website, the Daily Mail, Lewis offered to furnish the undercover cop with an unspecified drug and to meet at a train station in San Francisco. The date, however, resulted in Lewis’ arrest.
Police have searched the principal’s home and found 4.8 grams of meth, four vials of GHB, three meth pipes and a scale with drug residue, the Chronicle points out. The Daily Mail notes that authorities also found unidentified pills that are currently being tested.
According to the police report, investigators discovered 10 hidden cameras in Lewis’ closet, including one that was hidden in nose of a teddy bear. Other cameras were hidden in a coat hanger, a lighter and a watch. Along with the cameras, investigators took his hard drives and computer as well.
Lewis is in the Santa Clara County Jail and has been set with a $25,000 bail. School officials have put him on unpaid administrative leave.
Santa Clara Unified Superintendant Dr. Bobbie Plough told the San Jose Mercury News that "the community felt he was well-regarded" and that they are "shocked" by Lewis’ allegations.
"Our first concern is for students, staff and families," Plough added.
Tabitha Kappeler, also a member of the school district, told KTVU.com that the school’s children "will be a little disappointed" about Lewis’ arrest.
However, a guardian of students at the school expressed her concern about the situation.
"If you do something like this sooner or later you’re going to get caught," Mattie Rush, a grandmother to a kindergarten student and a third grader, said. "It’s bad that the children have to know that someone they look up to like that got caught up in something like this."
Rush also said that Lewis, who had been principal for seven years, even helped out with the anti-drug DARE program.
Lewis was charged with five felony drug counts, including two counts of transportation, sale or distribution of meth and GHB and three counts of possessing meth, GHB and ecstasy for sale, and a misdemeanor for possession of drug paraphernalia, according to the Chronicle. The newspaper also reports that investigators did not find that Lewis’ alleged activities involved the elementary school. But the police report did mention the principal did send texts related to drug furnishing while he was on the job.
Lewis could be sentenced to five years or more jail time if he is convicted.