A Charleston County teacher’s plan to start work at a Johns Island school went up in smoke after deputies said they found nearly $26,000 worth of pot in her home next door.
Faith Kathleen Jones-Paulus, 34, and her husband, Christopher Andrew Paulus, 40, of Bohicket Road each face charges of possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute near a school and possession with intent to distribute marijuana.
Paulus also faces a felony count of second-offense trafficking in marijuana and two firearms charges.
Jones-Paulus had been teaching sixth grade at Memminger Elementary School in downtown Charleston and was scheduled to start teaching fifth grade at Haut Gap Middle School on Monday morning, according to Charleston County School District spokesman Daniel Head.
She is on paid administrative leave since being charged.
The couple lives next door to the school. Deputies said they confiscated 7.2 pounds of marijuana in 13 clear plastic bags, with a street value of $25,920, according to the incident report and arrest affidavit.
It’s a neighborhood of older, single-story brick houses, where many of the elderly residents have iron bars on their doors.
A neighbor who didn’t want to be identified said the couple moved there a couple of months ago and showed no signs of trouble.
The pot was discovered after Jones-Paulus’ husband was arrested on a gun charge and led the deputy back to the house to check on his dogs, according to incident report.
A deputy investigating drug activity on nearby Ghana Street on Wednesday night saw Paulus approaching the rear of a house and tried to question him, according to the report. Paulus turned away and threw a black gun on the ground, the deputy said.
The gun was identified as a black Kel-Tec semiautomatic 9 mm C9.
Paulus was charged with unlawful carrying of a pistol and possession of a firearm during the commission or attempt of a violent crime.
Paulus said he wanted to check on his dogs before being taken to jail, according to the report.
He asked for a drink of water, they went inside, and the deputy said he detected a strong odor of marijuana. That led to a search warrant and the discovery of the pot, according to the report.
Paulus was booked into jail and released on $100,000 bail.
A warrant was issued for Jones-Paulus.
Jones-Paulus surrendered Monday morning, and her bail was set at $50,000.
Reach Dave Munday at 937-5553.