ANGLETON — An Angleton High School student is facing a felony drug charge after district police found him in possession of synthetic LSD on school grounds officials said Thursday.
School officials immediately began investigating after receiving a Crime Stoppers tip Tuesday morning about a student bringing drugs to campus, Principal Jerry Crowell said.
“Crime Stoppers tips comes through the assistant principal’s office,” Crowell said. “We investigate all tips thoroughly.”
By lunchtime Tuesday, Angleton ISD police officers had arrested 18-year-old Jamie Fortanelli after finding him in possession of 31 tabs of synthetic LSD wrapped in tinfoil, Angleton ISD Police Chief James Gayle IV said.
“We found 31 tabs, plus individual bags to deliver,” Gayle said.
Fortanelli was booked into the Brazoria County jail Tuesday on a second-degree felony charge of possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver, according to jail records. He remained there Thursday evening on a $30,000 bond.
The incident is still under investigation, Gayle said, and Crowell said other charges are pending.
“There were other students involved, but he was the supplier,” Crowell said.
Gayle said Fortanelli’s arrest speaks to a disturbing trend — the re-emergence of LSD, a drug popular in the 1960s among high school students. In February, a 16-year-old Montgomery High School student died from an overdose of synthetic LSD, known on the streets as “N-bomb.”
“There has unfortunately been a surge of synthetic LSD back in the school systems,” Gayle said. “Because it’s synthetic, kids believe it’s not as dangerous, but it’s much worse. It’s the same thing we battled with marijuana.”
Crowell, who is in his sixth year at Angleton High School, said he has seen an uptick in synthetic LSD use on his campus over the last year and a half.
“It’s alarming because we don’t know what the chemical compounds are. We don’t know how they’re going to react to it,” Crowell said. “The scary thing for us is that we have kids buying and ingesting what they think is LSD.”
Officials sent Angleton High School students home Thursday with a letter explaining the incident, and also offered tips on how to prevent such cases in the future, Crowell said.
“This may not be popular, but kids don’t deserve privacy in your house. You have the right to go through their stuff and find out what they’re doing and who they’re hanging out with,” the principal said. “The big thing is to talk to your kids. Start that conversation because sometimes that conversation is hard to start.”
Angleton ISD Superintendent Pat Montgomery agreed.
“We want our kids to have the best future possible, and we believe drugs ruin that future,” Montgomery said. “My heart is broken for the student involved. When you’re 18, you shouldn’t be making decisions that have such horrendous consequences.”