Middle School Teacher Jailed For Reportedly Overdosing In Front Of Class

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A New Jersey middle school teacher was arrested and charged Thursday after he overdosed on fentanyl in front of a classroom full of students, police say.

Frank Thompson, 57, was charged with drug-related crimes and offenses in addition to endangering the welfare of children following a November 29 overdose in his classroom at Roosevelt Intermediate School, a report from the Westfield Police Department stated.

Police were alerted to Thompson’s condition by the school resource officer, Fortunato Riga who found Thompson in his classroom unresponsive and unconscious on the floor being treated by the school nurse and surrounded by students, the report stated.

Recognizing signs of overdose, Riga administered Narcan on Thompson and immediately saw signs of improvement, according to the report.

“The Westfield Police Department continues to prioritize its ongoing partnership with the Westfield Public School System to ensure it has the safety and security resources it needs on a daily basis,” said Westfield Police Chief Christopher Battiloro per. the report. “In this case, the swift actions of Officer Riga, who is on-site at Roosevelt Intermediate each school day, proved instrumental in maintaining the safety of the students and administering potentially life-saving measures to Mr. Thompson.” (RELATED: Overdose Deaths Skyrocket Over 1,000% In Los Angeles County)

A further investigation revealed drug paraphernalia in the classroom closet prompting police to charge the art teacher with possession of a controlled dangerous substance (fentanyl), possession of drug paraphernalia, and endangering the welfare of children, the police report stated.

Thompson is scheduled to appear before Central Judicial Processing on Feb 1.

“While the Westfield Public School District cannot comment on personnel matters which are confidential, we will maintain a continued focus on student and staff safety and on preserving the integrity of the classroom learning environment,” Superintendent Dr. Raymond González stated per the report. “We are grateful for our strong partnership with the Westfield Police Department,” he added.