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ECMS teacher arrested after pot found in classroom


An Escambia County Middle School teacher was arrested Friday morning (Feb. 24) after she was found to be in possession of an undisclosed quantity of marijuana inside her classroom.

According to a press release from the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, deputies were sent to ECMS after the principal reported that there was a strong odor of what she believed to be marijuana coming from a specific area inside the school.

Deputies and the department’s K-9 unit were dispatched to the school. Lawmen entered the school and also detected an odor that they believed to be marijuana in the school’s hallway.

The K-9 officer began to search the school and alerted on a particular classroom. Students were removed from the classroom and a search was done of the room. The drug dog then alerted on a bag that was located under the teacher’s desk.

Officers asked the teacher – later identified as 49-year-old Kimberly McKay Downey, of a McRae Street address in Atmore – if she knew to whom the bag belonged. She replied that it was hers, and a search of the bag turned up a plastic bag containing three partially burned, hand-rolled cigarettes believed to be marijuana.

Downey was arrested and charged with unlawful possession of marijuana in the second degree. She was taken to the Escambia County Detention Center, where she was booked and subsequently released after a $6,000 bond was posted.

The case is still under investigation.