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Florida teacher arrested after attempting to buy ‘8 ball’ of meth while at school


Jacksonville, Florida — A teacher at an elementary school is facing a criminal charge after authorities say she tried to purchase methamphetamine while on the job.

Valerie Lee Prince, who teaches first-graders at Jacksonville Heights Elementary School in the Duval County Public Schools district, was taken into custody when she met with an undercover agent in an attempt to buy an “eight ball” of meth for $85, First Coast News reports. She has been charged with soliciting to purchase methamphetamine.

According to jacksonville.com, investigators set up the undercover operation after learning that a teacher at the school might be using illegal drugs. Reports say Prince first tried to arrange for the drugs to be delivered to the school.

“We did not deliver the drugs to that school, but that brought us great concern,” Clay County Sheriff’s Department Sgt. Vincent Hall tells Action News Jax. “It was a pretty nonchalant request and the indication was that it was no big deal to the suspect.”

Prince has been removed by the school district, which is conducting its own investigation, according to jacksonville.com. She had been teaching at the school since the beginning of the 2018 school year. She reportedly admitted to using meth 10 times within the past five to six months.

“The situation is disturbing,” Lieutenant of Narcotics Domenic Paniccia tells Action News Jax. “This is someone that was in charge of kids, first-grade kids, and it’s something that was a priority to us.”

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