Several undergraduates were arrested in two drug busts that took place last month.
Juniors Alejandro Pedroza and Kyle Power were arrested in both Durham and Alamance counties within a span of three days for several drug charges including possession of a total of more than eight pounds of marijuana. Junior David Lai was also arrested in Alamance County on similar charges. The total value of the marijuana could be worth more than $11,000.
Pedroza and Power were arrested Feb. 22 and placed in the Durham County Jail. Pedroza was charged with conspiracy to sell or deliver marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and attempted felony possession of marijuana. He was placed under a $6,000 bond. Power was charged with selling or distributing marijuana and conspiracy to sell or deliver marijuana—both felonies—and was placed under a $7,500 bond.
Both students were released later that day after posting bail.
Pedroza and Power were arrested at the Bryan Center Post Office Feb. 22 at 9:27 a.m. after signing for a package, according to the Duke University Police Department incident report. DUPD found 3.5 pounds of marijuana and several pieces of paraphernalia with drug residue, including a glass pipe, metal grinder, glass jar and glass bong. The marijuana seized was worth $5,000, according to the report.
Two days later, Lai, Pedroza and Power were arrested for similar drug charges in Alamance County. Police found about 4.62 pounds of marijuana in addition to drug paraphernalia Feb. 24 at The Glenns at Elon Apartments, located near Elon University in Burlington, N.C.
That amount of marijuana could be worth about $6,600—if the marijuana is valued the same per pound as the drugs discovered by DUPD Feb. 22.
The three students were charged with the felonious charges of possession of marijuana and intent to sell and deliver the drug. Each was placed under a $125,000 bond.
All three students later posted bond—Lai was released Feb. 28, Pedroza was released Feb. 26 and Power was released March 4, a representative from the Alamance County Jail confirmed Sunday.
As of Monday night, Lai and Power were still listed as students on the Office of Information Technology’s online phonebook but Pedroza was not. Dean of Students Sue Wasiolek said she could not comment on the status of individual students, but she confirmed in a phone interview that Duke has “been in touch” with students involved in the incident.
“We assess the severity of the allegations and the potential threat that the students’ continued presence on campus poses to the rest of the community,” Wasiolek said, adding that the University typically punishes drug distribution more severely than possession.
All three students did not respond to interview requests Monday.
The Durham court dates for Pedroza and Power are set for April 18. Lai and Power will go to court for the charges in Alamance county March 18. As of Monday night, no court date had been listed for Pedroza’s charges in Alamance County. Power is incorrectly listed as “Kyle Powers” on the Durham County Government website.
The Burlington incident also involved two Elon students, juniors Taylor Zachary and David Brenner. Both were individually charged with possession of drug paraphernalia, and Brenner was charged with simple possession of marijuana. All charges for both Elon students were misdemeanors.