Valerie Lee Prince Jacksonville Heights Elementary teacher busted trying to get $85 8 ball of meth delivered to school during class.
A Florida first grade teacher has been busted after she sought to have drugs delivered to her while she taught at an elementary school, according to authorities.
Valerie Lee Prince, 43, called a dealer to bring her an eight ball (an eighth of an ounce) of meth at Jacksonville Heights Elementary School — saying she was willing to abandon her class to collect it, according to Clay County Sheriff’s Office.
‘You call me, I can just say I have to use the phone real quick — I could step out and come right back in,’ she told the dealer, who was an informant who worked with police narcotics officers to record the call.
The call suggested that she planned to ‘consume some of the narcotics and return to the classroom,’ Lt. Domenic Paniccia told during a press conference, which shared audio of the teacher’s call.
‘The situation is disturbing,’ Paniccia said. ‘This is someone that was in charge of kids, first-grade kids, and it’s something that was a priority to us.’
Sgt. Vincent Hall, said it was ‘a pretty nonchalant request,’ saying, ‘The indication was that it was no big deal to the suspect.’
‘It is always disappointing and disturbing whenever an educator is implicated in this type of activity,’
An undercover officer later delivered her $85 of meth — outside of school hours — before Prince was arrested. Upon her arrest, Prince was charged with purchasing and possessing meth, a felony. She was still being held in Clay County Jail with an arraignment set for March 10th, court records revealed.
Prince admitted to using methamphetamine 10 times within the last six months after her arrest, according to the Clay County Sheriff’s Office. She has taught at the school since last year and has been suspended by the Duval County School District pending the outcome of the investigation.
‘I hope that she’s stripped of her credentials and never allowed to be in contact with kids again,’ Clay County Sheriff Darryl Daniels said.
It remained unclear if the teacher had previously had contraband delivered to her while at the school.
Duval County Public Schools said it was also holding its own investigation, with Prince ‘removed from the school.’
‘It is always disappointing and disturbing whenever an educator is implicated in this type of activity,’ a spokesperson told First Coast News.
‘As a district, we have very high standards for teachers and all employees, and every day thousands of teachers are going beyond the call of duty to serve children and families,’ the district said in a statement. ‘The alleged behavior falls well short of our standards.’
It remained unclear if the teacher had sought treatment for her affliction.