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Police Bust possible DMT lab at Georgetown University

By Roads, Oct 23, 2010 | Updated: Jan 25, 2011 | | |
Rating:
5/5,
  1. Roads
    Washington (CNN) -- Authorities have arrested two Georgetown University students and another person in connection to a suspected drug lab found inside a dormitory Saturday morning, D.C. Metro police said.


    The three males, each at least 18, face charges of possession of drug paraphernalia, said Officer Hugh Carew, a spokesman for the police department. The third individual was a campus visitor. None were identified.


    Police said that shortly before 6 a.m., they received a call about a foul odor at Georgetown's Harbin Hall.


    Initially, police thought the lab was for producing meth, but later said it was for making Dimethyltryptamine, a hallucinogenic drug commonly known as DMT.
    DMT is an illegal substance, and the charges against the three men remain the same, Carew said.



    Students possibly were exposed to the chemicals and seven people, including two security officers, were evaluated by medical personnel at the scene, said fire department spokesman Pete Piringer. No injuries were reported.


    Harbin Hall was briefly evacuated for a couple of hours following the discovery the chemicals.


    A Georgetown spokesman said the university would release a statement later in the day.


    CNN - October 23, 2010
    http://www.cnn.com/2010/CRIME/10/23/dc.georgetown.meth/index.html?hpt=T2

Comments

  1. FCTLIS
    Damn! SWIM was going to post this.

    SWIM actually saw this story come over the AP wires (private news "ticker" that feeds major papers and broadcast stations) before it even hit the web. For atleast the first 4-6 hours the headlines published went with "Meth Lab", presumably to lack of evidence and sensationalism. It didn't make sense to SWIM at all, and SWIM actually saw an online commenter (can't remember where) who mentioned the improbability of a "Meth Lab". Extracting DMT makes much, much more sense.......
  2. SamanthaRabbit
    D.C. police identify students involved with DMT lab

    D.C. police identify students involved with drug lab

    District police have identified two students and a campus visitor who were arrested Saturday on charges that they maintained a drug lab in a Georgetown University freshman dorm. Georgetown students Charles Smith and John Romano, who live on the ninth floor of Harbin Hall, and John Perrone, a visitor and friend of one of the students, were arrested and charged with manufacturing a controlled substance. Police said the three had a lab set up to produce the hallucinogenic drug DMT in the campus dorm room. District police did not release the ages or the home towns of the three.

    Police also did not say how much, if any, of the drug was found, although officials said chemicals used in the production of the drug were discovered in the room. Police were alerted to the room early Saturday when people reported a chemical odor in the building, later prompting a series of evacuations. District officials said that a few people were treated for exposure to the chemicals but that they posed no further threat to other dorm residents.


    Sunday, October 24, 2010; 11:20 PM
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/24/AR2010102403444.html
  3. Terrapinzflyer
    Two Drug Lab Suspects Face Charges; Romano Released

    John Romano '14, resident of Harbin Hall Room 926 — the epicenter of Saturday's drug lab bust — will be released later today and will not face charges, according to his lawyer. Romano's roommate, Charles Smith '14, and University of Richmond freshman John Perrone, are being held without bond and face federal charges of "conspiracy to manufacture" and "possession with intent to distribute" the drug DMT.

    "My heart goes out to the other clients and their families, who were not as fortunate as my client," Romano's lawyer, Larry Gondelman (LAW ’77), said in a Q-and-A following the suspects' arraignment at the U.S. District Court for D.C. Gondelman said that prosecutors had gone "pretty hard on the other two [Smith and Perrone]" during today's hearing.

    "Romano is doing remarkably well," Gondelman said, adding that he was not sure if his client would be returning to Georgetown. In an interview with student press on Thursday, Vice President for Student Affairs Todd Olson declined to comment on the Office of Student Conduct's ongoing investigation into the matter.

    A student caller contacted the Department of Public Safety early Saturday morning informing officers of the incident, Olson confirmed today. According to charging document filed by Officer Alvin Cardinal of the Metropolitan Police Department, the call reported “information that there were individuals selling drugs from Room 926." When officers responded, Romano answered the door; Smith and Perrone were also in the room at the time.

    A DPS search of the room unveiled “a zip locks [sic] containing a green plant substance, a carbon dioxide cannister [sic], homemade smoking devices, a grinder, a jar containing a red liquid substance, and a styrofoam cooler with dry ice and several jars containing a clear liquid substance.” The report continued, “Also, found was a suitcase that had a strong chemical odor and contained ammonia, salt, lighter fluid, rubber gloves, and a turkey baster.”

    When MPD and D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services personnel arrived on the scene Saturday, they confirmed Room 926 contained hazardous materials and then ordered Harbin’s evacuation, according to Cardinal’s report. “[A Drug Enforcement Administration expert then] indicated that the chemicals in the room appeared to be precursor chemicals used in a clandestine laboratory used to make or manufacture illegal narcotics,” the complaint read.

    According to the document, when Smith told a law enforcement officer he thought it was a “DMT lab,” the specialist from the DEA informed Cardinal of the high risks posed by the lab.

    “The DEA expert told me that the combination of chemicals present in the room were in themselves potentially highly flammable and explosive, and thus highly dangerous,” Cardinal said.

    At the University of Richmond, where Perrone is a freshman, police searched Perrone’s dorm room after the campus safety department received a call from MPD, according to The Collegian, Richmond’s student newspaper.

    The search did not yield any discoveries of drugs in Perrone’s residence, Richmond’s Director of Media and Public Relations Brian Eckert said to The Collegian.

    According to Richmond campus police Capt. Beth Simonds, the university police was not affiliated with the arrest at Georgetown or the ongoing investigation. At Richmond, however, Eckert said violation of federal or state law regulating illegal drug use is a violation of the student code of conduct.

    “If this were proven to be the case, the student would be subject to judicial action here,” Eckert told The Collegian.

    A detention and preliminary hearing for Smith and Perrone is scheduled for Wednesday at 1:30 p.m.

    For the formal charging document filed by MPD Officer Alvin Cardinal, see: http://scr.bi/c9netO

    For The Hoya's original story on Saturday's Harbin drug lab incident, see: http://bit.ly/94g1Pa

    For coverage of Vice President for Student Affairs Todd Olson's interview with student press, see: http://bit.ly/ctH75n


    http://www.thehoya.com/news/Two-Drug-Lab-Suspects-Face-Federal-Charges-Romano-Released-10251010-2/
  4. Terrapinzflyer
    Washington Post reports that K2 tip, not “strange odor,” led to Harbin arrests

    The Washington Post is reporting that University Public Safety officers received a drug tip on Saturday morning that led to the arrests of Charlie Smith (SFS ’14), John Perrone, a University of Richmond freshman, and John Romano (COL ’14), who was released by authorities yesterday.

    The report contradicts statements made by Todd Olson, vice president of student affairs, who claimed in multiple emails that “a strange odor on the ninth floor” led DPS officers to Smith and Romano’s dorm room.

    The Post spoke with an anonymous law enforcement official who claimed that Public Safety officers observed a student outside of Harbin Hall smoking what appeared to be marijuana. The student, however, told the DPS officer that he was smoking K2, a legal marijuana alternative made of crushed, chemical-sprayed leaves.

    After being asked where he got the drug, the student then led to officer to Harbin room 926.

    The law enforcement official who spoke with the Post added that a search of the dorm room found “five small pill capsules containing suspected DMT.” An additional search of Perrone’s car turned up “several empty capsules with traces of suspected DMT.”

    According to a Metropolitan Police Department incident report, which collaborates the anonymous official’s account, officials also discovered “a green plant substance, a carbon dioxide cannister, homemade smoking devices, a grinder, a jar containing a red liquid substance, and a styrofoam cooler with dry ice and several jars containing a clear liquid substance,” as well as “a suitcase that has a strong chemical odor and contained ammonia, salt, lighter fluid, rubber gloves, and a turkey baster” in the dorm room.

    http://blog.georgetownvoice.com/201...2-tip-not-strange-odor-led-to-harbin-arrests/
  5. torachi
    Plea deal in works in G'town drug case

    Two young men are expected to plead guilty to manufacturing a hallucinogenic drug in a Georgetown dorm in October, according to court records and an official with the office of U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr.

    Prosecutors filed new charges late Thursday against Charles B. Smith and John Perrone, charging them with one count of violating federal law and one count of violating District law in connection with mixing DMT, or dimethyltryptamine.

    The charges were brought in two-count criminal information, a type of document typically used when defendants are entering a plea agreement.

    "Counsel for the defendants and the government have reached an agreement that will resolve the matter by a pre-indictment plea," Smith and Perrone's lawyers wrote in an unopposed motion that also was filed Thursday, and that said the men expect to enter a plea within two weeks.

    Smith, a freshman in Georgetown's School of Foreign Service, and his high school friend, John Perrone, a freshman at the University of Richmond, were released to the custody of their fathers and allowed to return to Massachusetts after their Oct. 23 arrest.

    Smith and Perrone, both 18 at the time, were 2010 high school classmates from Andover, Mass.

    Danny C. Onorato and G. Allen Dale, lawyers for Smith and Perrone, said Friday they could not comment.

    By Spencer S. Hsu | January 21, 2011; 6:10 PM ET

    http://voices.washingtonpost.com/crime-scene/spencer-s-hsu/plea-deal-in-works-in-georgeto.html
  6. 80sbaby
    wow, that sux, and didnt that just get made controlled within the last month or two, dang
  7. torachi
    No, that was 5-MeO-DMT. Closely related, but DMT has been scheduled for decades.
  8. Terrapinzflyer
    DMT Suspects Will Serve Three-Year Probation

    Former Georgetown student Charles Smith and former University of Richmond student John Perrone were convicted Friday for attempted and unlawful manufacture of the controlled substance Dimethyltryptamine, a D.C. code violation. They will be placed on probation for three years.

    Smith and Perrone were arrested on Oct. 23 on suspicion of producing one gram of DMT in Smith's Harbin dorm room, enough for roughly 10 doses, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration.

    Perrone had printed instructions off the Internet and purchased the materials necessary to produce DMT, including ammonia, acetone and paint thinner. Smith had agreed to pay for half of the materials, he said at Friday's hearing at the U.S. District Court. The DMT was produced for personal use, not for sale and distribution.

    "It was for personal use," Perrone said. "I might have shared it with others, but that was not the plan. The plan was not to manufacture a bunch and sell it."

    Smith and Perrone decided to make DMT, as opposed to other drugs, because of the relative ease and low risk of producing it. It does not carry the same risk of explosion as methamphetamine, for example.

    "The process itself is simple and less dangerous than many other things," Smith said at the hearing.

    Smith and Perrone used ammonia, acetone and paint thinner to extract the drug from a Mimosa root-bark. They then sealed the DMT in six mason jars, which they placed in a Styrofoam cooler filled with dry ice to allow the drug to crystallize, according to Perrone.

    The Georgetown Department of Public Safety arrived while the DMT was in the process of crystallizing and immediately took Smith and Perrone into custody.

    "I have never consumed DMT in my life. Didn't get that far," Perrone said.

    At a hearing at the U.S. District Court on Oct. 28 following the arrest, Smith and Perrone were released to the custody of their parents in Andover, Mass. Their next court date was set for Jan. 24. That hearing was cancelled, however, as their lawyers and the prosecution reached a plea agreement.

    On Friday, the two sides passed a joint, non-binding sentence recommendation for the defendants of six months in prison, with an execution of sentence suspended probation of three years after the defendants pled guilty.

    With an ESS probation, the defendants will not serve their sentence in jail but will be put on probation for three years.

    If they complete probation without any violations, the conviction will be expunged from their record; the arrest will remain, however. Violation of the terms of probation could result in them serving their original prison sentence. Pending input from the Probation Office, the sentence will be finalized with potential modifications within three weeks.
    Until then, Smith and Perrone will continue living with their parents on release at their Massachusetts homes. Neither is currently enrolled in a university.

    By By Mary Murphy and Lauren Weber
    Hoya Staff Writers
    Published: Saturday, February 12, 2011

    http://www.thehoya.com/dmt-suspects-will-serve-three-year-probation-1.1977053
  9. PsychoActivist
    Intentional pun here? ;)

    They actual made away alright. Could have been a lot worse than 3 yrs. probation.


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