May 10, 2007, 10:01AM
Drug dogs zero in on Galveston teacher's desk
By HARVEY RICE
GALVESTON — Police were surprised when drug dogs alerted them to a Ball High School teacher's desk during a routine sweep of Galveston school district campuses, school police Chief LeeRoy Amador said Wednesday.
"We were caught completely off guard," said Amador, whose officers were searching Tuesday for drugs brought by students.
There were no drugs in the desk of Spanish teacher Stakely McConnell, 25, he said. The dog had detected the odor of marijuana on papers in McConnell's desk.
McConnell admitted to smoking marijuana over the weekend, Amador said. The marijuana was transferred to the papers in McConnell's desk through perspiration on his hands, Amador said.
He gave police permission to search his car after two dogs alerted them to it, and police found a half cigarette of marijuana in the ashtray, Amador said. The chief said there was no evidence or suspicion that McConnell involved students in his alleged drug use.
He was charged with possession of marijuana, a misdemeanor carrying a maximum fine of $4,000 and one year in jail. Because it was in a drug-free zone, the district attorney can increase the charge to a state jail felony with a maximum $10,000 fine