WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – This school year, Williamson County School Resource Officers will carry THC testing kits.
THC is the chemical that causes a “high” when smoking marijuana.
Law enforcement says kids are now putting THC in E-cigarettes or “vapes” which Deputy Jonathan Couey says is like smoking marijuana.
Couey says it most often happens at school.
“Staircases, bathrooms,” Couey said. “I’ve heard stories of students doing it in the back of class when the teacher’s back is turned.”
Couey and Deputy Brandon Bryant are school resource officers for Williamson County Schools where all SROs are now carrying the testing kits.
“This is something that we are really stepping up our game on,” Bryant said.
This week the two deputies posted a video on Facebook, warning students and parents about the consequences of getting caught vaping, especially with THC.
“If caught, the student will face charges,” Couey says in the video.
Since January, there have been 142 tobacco citations given to Williamson County students, according to Bryant.
Most of the citations were for vaping, he said.
“With vapes in high school, it’s fairly common and even in middle schools,” Couey said.
SROs at Wilson County Schools also test for THC.
The deputies say the goal isn’t to hand out citations but to keep students safe.
“A lot of young people are being admitted to the hospital with horrible respiratory issues,” Couey said.
“I want them to see the dangers that go along with this habit,” Bryant said.