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YOLO COUNTY NEWS
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Police, school officials probe alleged drug offer at Montgomery

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From page A1 | March 27, 2012 | 10 Comments

Davis police and school officials are investigating an incident in which several young students reported being offered drugs — and called racial slurs when they refused — on the Montgomery Elementary School campus.

Parent Joy Erickson said her son, who is in sixth grade at the South Davis school, had just finished lunch Friday and was at recess with two friends when the encounter occurred.

“Two older boys approached my son and a couple of his friends and attempted to sell them marijuana,” Erickson told The Enterprise on Monday. One of the boys was high school-age, the other around middle school-age.

When the younger boys rejected the offer, the older boys hurled racial slurs — including the N-word — at them, according to Erickson, whose son and his friends are African-American.

The boys immediately reported the incident to school staff, who then contacted Davis police. Officers responded to the Danbury Street campus and took statements from the young students.

Erickson said she wasn’t notified of the incident until about 3:30 p.m. that day, nor was she offered the opportunity to sit in on her son’s interview with police.

She also is concerned that a note that was sent home to Montgomery families on Friday bore no mention of the racial slurs, which she described as being extremely hurtful to her son and his friends.

“I just feel that lots of things get swept under the rug here,” Erickson said. “I think it’s important to get the word out that Davis schools are not perfect, the community is not perfect, and these things happen.”

School officials are taking both the alleged drug peddling and epithets seriously as they conduct their investigation, which was still ongoing as of Monday, said Pamela Mari, a spokeswoman for the Davis Joint Unified School District.

“We are absolutely investigating that allegation (of racial slurs) as vigorously as the alleged offering to sell,” Mari said. “That is absolutely unacceptable in our school system.”

Mari said officials withheld some information about the incident in order to preserve the integrity of the investigation, and the district is bound by strict confidentiality laws because both the victims and the suspects are minors.

“We can’t say what we are doing, but that doesn’t mean we’re doing nothing,” Mari said. She added that the desire to quickly secure the campus prevented officials from making earlier contact with the students’ parents.

“We do when we can, but time is of the essence,” Mari said. “The essential conversation is to get the facts of the matter. We have taken every possible step to determine exactly what happened and … (apply) appropriate consequences for any individuals who have violated the law.”

Erickson, who was notified of and accompanied her son to a subsequent interview with school officials on Monday, is calling for the two older boys to be expelled from their schools if the allegations are confirmed.

“It’s very scary that in sixth grade, this is happening in the community,” Erickson said. “We’re going to do what we can to make sure there is swift discipline in this case.”

— Reach Lauren Keene at lkeene@davisenterprise.net or (530) 747-8048. Follow her on Twitter @laurenkeene

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Discussion | 10 comments

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  • casperMarch 27, 2012 - 10:00 am

    I absolutely agree with the level of repercussion required. I also heard the police did find the two drug dealers and gave them a warning.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • ZippeeMarch 27, 2012 - 8:32 pm

    Where exactly did you hear this tidbit? From the police? The alleged dealers? Their parents? Where?

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Ceasar ChavezMarch 27, 2012 - 3:03 pm

    This is unacceptable! A warning???? The racial stuff was not even hinted in the letter. I have two children in MME and it iwll be their last. I am so sick of the adminstrative circus show that takes place in this district. Davis may be considered a safe haven on the surface, but in reality its an overpriced ghetto. Record burglaries, apathetic Yolo county sheriffs, nonexsistent city police, and now drug peddling punks that are gently warned. Grow a pair Davis!!!!!!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Pissed off parentMarch 27, 2012 - 3:20 pm

    I could not agree more!! This school and the district has on a number of occasions swept their problems under the rug. I have two children at MME as well, and we are NOT returning next year. We have had many unresolved problems at this school. And as far as your statement that Davis is an overpriced ghetto, you got that right!!! We were a victim of one of those burglaries. The Yolo Country Sheriff on our case was so apathetic!!! No follow up, no fingerprints, no nothing. We are OUT of Davis schools and out of Davis as of this summer.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • questionMarch 28, 2012 - 9:45 am

    Where do you think life would be better and safer?

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • casperMarch 28, 2012 - 8:41 am

    I would like to say that the Davis Police are outstanding. I live near the Pole Line and Cowell intersection and I can hear the squad cars in pursuit. They even came into my circle and were very polite when searching for a crook who fled his car. I don't blame Montgomery at all, its the parents of these little drug dealers who are to blame.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Rich RifkinMarch 27, 2012 - 5:54 pm

    "Erickson, who was notified of and accompanied her son to a subsequent interview with school officials on Monday, is calling for the two older boys to be expelled from their schools if the allegations are confirmed." I agree with Ms. Erickson that expulsion is a proper punishment if the allegations are found to be true. However, before anyone gets too excited, keep in mind that just a few years back, there was a serious racist graffiti incident at Holmes, which at first was said to be a hate crime, but it turned out that the girls involved, who wrote anti-black, anti-Asian and anti-Latino messages, were themselves black and Latino, and tried to make their attack on their school look like something it wasn't. That is not to say we have not had real racist attacks in Davis in recent years. Not long before the fake incident at Holmes, there was another graffiti attack there and also out at the Baptist Church west of Davis and at the Jehovah's Witness church nearby in which racist epithets were sprayed on those buildings and some were vandalized. My suggestion is everyone needs to wait for a proper investigation to know if what the Montgomery students claim happened is credible.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Victim of stupid parentsMarch 28, 2012 - 7:06 pm

    You ppl r stupid no drug dealer is going to go to a elemintry school to sell drugs it was just kids messing around and saying stupid stuff

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • MME STUDENTMarch 28, 2012 - 8:29 pm

    I am an MME student and it was actually scary. even though i wasn't there i know these people and i would probaly know how it feels like. (SCARY)

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Victim of stupid parentsMarch 28, 2012 - 8:55 pm

    Nah u stupid

    Reply | Report abusive comment
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