MONTGOMERY COUNTY, N.C. -- A West Montgomery High School coach and one of his players are facing charges this week, accused of selling drugs. It's a crime that Montgomery County Schools Superintendent Dale Ellis said is unacceptable.
"We're very, very disappointed that something like this happened and we're going to take steps to let people know that it's not tolerated," Ellis said.
Troy police said in the arrest report that WMHS assistant coach Derrick Drake and 17-year-old varsity football player Dayquan Jones were caught together with marijuana, on Labor Day. They were pulled over after someone made a 911 call. The caller said the two were selling drugs in the parking lot of Rocky Knoll Apartments.
Officers searched Drake and Jones after smelling marijuana coming from the car. Troy police said officers found a bag of marijuana in the driver's side door. Officers then said they noticed Jones reaching into his pockets to pull something out, so officers stopped him. They searched him and found nine individually wrapped bags of marijuana in Jones' pocket.
Jones faces several charges including a felony charge of possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute. Drake faces three misdemeanor charges including possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.
Two days after the arrest, Drake resigned from his position as an assistant football and basketball coach and part-time custodian for the school. He worked there for two years. Jones is no longer on the football team. The district hopes these punishments send a strong message.
"We also want it to be a teachable moment as well, so we're hopeful that through the process of doing what we have to do that a lesson is learned and it does not happen again," Ellis said.
Some parents of student athletics were also disappointed to hear of the allegations.
"I know that everybody's human, but anytime you in the public eye you need to set a good example for the people that's under you," said Lula Medley, whose grandson attends WMHS. "You need to set a good example because we learn from our elders and he's supposed to be older than the kids so he should set down good grounds for them if he want them to follow him."
"Initial reaction, it was too bad," said Laura Vanmeter-Woodward, who has a son on the football team. "It was not a good example, but it does happen pretty much everywhere. You read about all kinds of things everywhere."
The district sad it does random drug tests with its student athletes before the season starts to promote a drug-free environment.
The superintendent also said the district ran a background check on the now-former coach before hiring him, which is customary, and he passed.
If convicted on the felony charge, the student could face up to eight months in jail and a $1,000 fine.