Pennsylvania crossing guard gave marijuana, vapes to students: Police – USA TODAY

A Pennsylvania woman is facing charges after investigators said she gave e-cigarettes and marijuana to middle school students. 
Kiara Lee, 26, a crossing guard at Penn Wood Middle School in Darby, about 61 miles east of Lancaster, is where the narcotics exchange began, a press release from the Delaware County District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer and Darby Borough Police Chief Joseph Gabe said. 
“School crossing guards epitomize the role of public servant. They are – quite literally – trusted with the lives of our children and hold a position of sacred trust in our communities across the Commonwealth and the country,” Delaware County District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer said in a statement. “For an individual to abuse that trust is deeply disturbing, and corrosive to the well-being of the entire community.” 
The investigation began on May 16, police said, after a student and their parent told the school’s principal about the distribution of narcotics near campus – specifically that the student had seen Lee giving other students vapes while Lee was working, according to the prosecutor’s statement.
The student who reported concerns with Lee also shared accounts from students which indicated the crossing guard had smoked marijuana “often” with at least one student and that she had given vapes to several others, according to the prosecutor’s statement.
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Investigators later made contact with the family of the student who was allegedly receiving illicit goods from the crossing guard and found text messages between Lee and the student which indicated the two had taken edibles and shared their experiences with one another, the release said. 
“While marijuana may not seem like a big deal to some folks in the community, I think we can all agree that crossing guards should not be providing narcotics – even if it’s ‘just’ marijuana – to our kids,” Darby Borough Police Chief Joseph Gabe said in a statement. “I also want to thank the staff at the Penn Wood Middle School, particularly Principal Cox, for their assistance with this investigation.” 
USA TODAY reached out to William Penn School District for comment regarding the crossing guard.
“The William Penn School District is disheartened that someone employed by the Darby Borough serving our district and community would behave in this reprehensible manner,” a spokesperson for the district said in a statement.
The school district thanks the district attorney and police department for their investigation into the accusations made against Lee.
“We thank Police Chief Joseph Gabe and the Darby Police Department as well as District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer and his office for pursuing this case and announcing charges against the suspect,” the spokesperson said. “The William Penn School District aims to support our students, and we will work with whoever has been affected and their families to provide assistance at this time. As the suspect is not one of our employees, we will be issuing no further comments.”
Lee is facing charges for distributing e-cigarettes and substances containing suspected marijuana to students, according to police. 
Ahjané Forbes is a reporter on the National Trending Team at USA TODAY. Ahjané covers breaking news, car recalls, crime, health, lottery and public policy stories. Email her at [email protected]. Follow her on InstagramThreads and X (Twitter).

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