Police Arrest Middle And High School Students

9:52 PM, May 14, 2012   |    comments
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GAITHERSBURG, Md. (WUSA)--Montgomery County Police are trying to stay on top of a disturbing trend-when warm weather hits, so does outdoor, underage drinking.

Police recently tracked down a group of teenage partiers in the Lakelands neighborhood of Gaithersburg. It all started with an anonymous tip and a wild walk through the woods, wading across a creek and under a bridge.

"The Sergeant approached them and they started running," said Montgomery County Police Officer John Borowski.

Teenage partiers leave behind a backpack and some beer cans in their rush to get away.

Adds Officer Borowski, "We had a younger female hop the fence on us. We had to go after her."

Police surround the woods on all sides, so the teens have no place to run.

Under arrest, six teenage girls-students at Frost Middle School and Quince Orchard High School.  The 14 and 15 year-olds tell police they'd been playing spin the bottle-as a drinking game.

Also detained, an 18 year-old boy who tried to run from police. So did this 15 year-old girl, who is defiant.

"None of us here are drunk," insists the girl.

But wait until the preliminary breathalyzer results come in.

"She is 14 years old, and she's a .17, twice the legal limit," says Police Officer Bill Morrison.

"I only had like this much," says a girl, gesturing with her hand and trying to minimize what's she's had to drink. "One beer and a little bit of vodka," she adds. 

Shouts Police Sergeant Mark White to a group of girls who are mouthing off, "You have something to say? Then say it loud enough, okay?" He then separates them. 

"Stand up," he says. "Stand up. Stand up!"

The 18 year-old had rum and coke in his backpack.  Taken from his own home, he says.

Officer Morrison asks him, "You didn't supply any of the alcohol? You just brought that?"

"Yes, sir," he responds.

Asks Morrison, "And that's all you brought?"

"Yes, sir," says the teen.

Morrison then asks, "So if I ask all these other kids, they're going to tell me just that, right?"

"That's correct," the teen responds.

Another officer asks him the date of his last arrest. This isn't the teen's first run-in with the law. Just two months ago, he was busted for marijuana possession.

Nearby, a 14-year-old girl cries while on the phone with her father.

"I'm so sorry," she sobs.

She is the only one of the girls who is visibly upset.

"Don't be mad at me," she cries. Her father is in federal law enforcement.

"You're gonna hate me. You're gonna hate me," she says through tears. 

The 18-year-old is released with a court date.  And one-by-one, fathers come to pick up their underage daughters.

The 14-year-old girl cries to her father, "I'm sorry."

He responds angrily, "Shut up!" 

Another father puts his hand over our photographer's camera lens.

"Do not take any pictures," the father shouts. 

Some are angry, like this father, who is collecting his twins. Others appear indifferent.

Officer Borowski explains, "Typically, they might act surprised, some of them might discipline their child right then and there. Other ones say it's the police's fault. When they say so and so, you violated my child's rights and so forth."

Four of the six girls were drinking. Two were not. But all six will be cited.

The two girls who were not drinking still received alcohol citations because of something known as constructive possession. It means they were so close to the illegal activity, they clearly knew it was happening and could have easily been participating themselves. 

Footnote: 9NEWS Now made the decision to blur the faces of the girls' fathers since showing them could potentially identify their daughters.

Written by: Andrea McCarren


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