Student accused of ‘possession of marijuana with intent to deliver’ at middle school

A 13-year-old Osceola Middle School (OMS) student was arrested after he allegedly gave a fellow student two baggies of suspected marijuana to “hold” for him.

Jordan James Rickard, N.E. 11th Court, Okeechobee, was arrested May 2 on a juvenile take and hold warrant charging him with the felony of possession of marijuana with intent to deliver within 1,000 feet of a school.

He was booked into the Okeechobee County Jail then taken to the St. Lucie Regional Detention Center in Fort Pierce.

In his probable cause affidavit used to obtain the warrant, assistant state attorney Terry Tribble outlined how Rickard was seen on school surveillance video handing something to a female student on April 17.

Mr. Tribble went on to state a witness reportedly saw Rickard hand two baggies of what was thought to be marijuana to the girl while the students were in line for breakfast.
The boy was taken to the office of OMS dean Glenda Kay Jarriel who searched Rickard but found nothing. However, it was later learned the boy had actually brought three small plastic baggies of suspected pot to school.

The probable cause affidavit stated that three baggies of suspected pot were seized. One of the baggies weighed .3 grams while the other two weighed .8 and .9 grams, respectively. The contents of those baggies were tested and those tests indicated a positive result for the presence of marijuana, noted the affidavit.

When contacted about this incident, Mr. Tribble explained that Rickard was charged with delivery of marijuana because he actually delivered the substances to the girl, but did not sell it.
The girl, whose identity was not released, was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of possession of marijuana under 20 grams. She has not gone to court yet, said Mr. Tribble.

Although the arrest warrant was approved by Judge Gerald Bryant and filed on April 27, it was not served until Tuesday, May 2, because attempts to deliver it to the boy and his family were unsuccessful.

“Reasonable efforts have been made to summons the child and parents to appear in court for a hearing on this matter. Despite reasonable efforts, this court has not obtained service of process,” stated the warrant.

Rickard was then arrested by Deputy Maria Camacho, of the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO).
In a prepared statement, superintendent of schools Ken Kenworthy said Rickard and the girl are entitled to dispute the facts of this case.

“If the finding is upheld by a hearing officer, the minimum consequences are expulsion or alternative placement,” he said.

The juvenile arrest affidavit filled out by Deputy Camacho indicates that Rickard was arrested while attending the Okeechobee Achievement Academy.

Eric Kopp is a staff writer for the Okeechobee News

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