COVINGTON - Two special education teachers from Indian Creek Middle School may have been celebrating the end of school a bit early last week and were arrested after an off-duty police officer observed them allegedly smoking marijuana, according to the Covington Police Department.
Michelle Goodall, 32, of 45 River Watch Drive has been charged with possession of marijuana less than 1 ounce and Makeisha Anntanett Marshall, 31, of 110 Trelawney Circle has been charged with possession of marijuana less than 1 ounce and open container, in connection with the incident that occurred in the Covington Corners shopping complex.
CPD spokesman Lt. Wendell Wagstaff said the women were arrested May 22 about 2:30 p.m.
"An off-duty police officer with Loganville PD notified 911 dispatch he was parked beside two females in the parking lot who were using some type of drugs," Wagstaff said.
The women were apparently parked near Farmer's Furniture store, but by the time CPD officers arrived, they had moved to a spot in front of CitiTrends, Wagstaff said.
Marshall, who was driving the vehicle, and Goodall, the passenger, reportedly attempted to walk away from the vehicle, but officers requested they get back into their car.
"The officer smelled a strong odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle," Wagstaff said.
When the officer asked who had been smoking marijuana, both women denied it, and the officer next asked to search one of the women's purse.
"They found cigarette rolling papers inside," Wagstaff said.
The women continued to maintain their innocence and allowed officers to search their vehicle.
"They both said there was no marijuana in the vehicle, although Marshall said she had just purchased the vehicle and didn't know what was in it," Wagstaff said, adding "They found a document where she had purchased insurance for it five months previously."
A small quantity of a "green leafy substance in a partially rolled, hand-rolled cigarette, a mixed alcoholic beverage and a pill bottle where Marshall had been prescribed Xanax," were found, Wagstaff said. Both women denied that either the drink or the marijuana belonged to them.
As the driver, Marshall was tested and registered positive for alcohol, Wagstaff said. The "green, leafy substance" was placed into evidence.
According to the Newton County School System's Public Relations Director Sherri Viniard, the women had worked May 22 and left the school following field day activities.
"They have voluntarily resigned effective immediately and information regarding this incident is being sent to the Georgia Professional Standards Commission," Viniard said.