7.21 ounces of marijuana found in residence hall

Chelsea Davis

All it takes is one whiff.

Adam Schwartz, freshman in construction engineering, was arrested and charged Jan. 24 with possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver, prohibited acts, failure to affix a drug tax stamp, possession of drug paraphernalia and underage possession of alcohol.

A Friley Hall residence staff member reported a suspicious smell to ISU Police that night and officers arrived at 2229 Friley Hall with a search warrant.

“Officers found approximately 204.34 grams [7.21 ounces] of marijuana in Schwartz’s room,” said Jerry Stewart, chief of ISU Police. “He was selling an ounce of marijuana for $400.”

Marijuana is typically sold by the ounce, quarter-ounce or even in grams, Stewart said. Street prices can vary based on the quality of the substance and “just the times.”

Officers will usually look for evidence of large amounts of cash, records of sales, paraphernalia, air freshener, bongs, pipes and scales. Out of these, officers found money and paper records detailing who Schwartz sells to in his room.

Officers then tested the substance with a field test kit, which involves placing a portion of the substance in a packet with ampoules, vials containing the testing fluid and breaking them.

If the substance turns a blue or violet color, it shows the presence of THC, the active compound [corrected from ingredient] in marijuana. The seized substance itself is then sent to a state lab for further analysis.

While statistics from 2009 to 2010 show an increase in illegal drug activity, Stewart said this isn’t necessarily the case.

“I suppose you could say it’s generational … but is it because there’s more [drug use] or more reporting? We just don’t know,” Stewart said.

Schwartz’s roommate, Aaron Schroder, sophomore in civil engineering, and another Friley Hall resident, Francisco Sanchez, freshman in mechanical engineering, were cited with possession of drug paraphernalia.

Stewart said it’s typical on campuses to see that the vast majority of drug cases involve marijuana.

“No surprise there,” Stewart said. “However, we are seeing meth in the central Iowa area, and some heroin, which is very disturbing.”

For the past several years, heroin has been moving into the central Iowa area, though not into campus, and has resulted in a death in Ames and one in Nevada, neither affiliated with the university, Stewart said.

“I suppose you might see some ecstasy on occasion, and hallucinogenic mushrooms, but we’re just not seeing much meth or cocaine and certainly not heroin on campus, per se,” Stewart said.

Stewart laughed, thinking back on past cases of discovering large quantities of marijuana in students’ rooms.

“We’ve had some cases in the past where someone had a fairly large quantity [of marijuana] but maintained that it’s for personal use because they’re an out-of-state student and they bring a larger ‘stash,’ if you will, to carry them through the semester,” Stewart said.

As of press time, Schwartz was still being held as an inmate at the Story County Jail under $15,000 bond.

Once he is released, he will go through the Office of Judicial Affairs through the Dean of Students Office.

Schwartz will be permitted to return to his Friley Hall residence “if he is still eligible after his judicial hearing,” said Sally Deters, residence life coordinator for the Department of Residence.