Brunswick teacher resigns after arrest for over 25 pounds of pot found in home

A Brunswick County Public Schools teacher has resigned after being arrested when local law enforcement served a warrant on her Leland home and found over 25 pounds of marijuana.

CATHERINE LEE TEAGUE A.K.A. CATHERINE LEE NEELY

Catherine Lee Neely, a.k.a. Catherine Lee Teague, age 47, has been arrested and charged with trafficking in marijuana and manufacture possession of a controlled substance with the intent to manufacture, sell, or deliver marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Teague was issued a $110,500 bond on May 12, which she posted the following day and was released from the Brunswick County Jail.

It is unclear if the trafficking and intent charges are Class H or I felonies. Class H is 4 to 25 months in prison and Class I is 3 to 12 months in prison.

According to warrant documents, Brunswick County Sheriff Deputies seized some 24.6 pounds of marijuana. Deputies also found and seized drug paraphernalia and discovered Teague was growing pot in a greenhouse in her backyard.

A second person arrested at the scene was Joshua Swaim, age 47. He was charged with misdemeanor of possessing drug paraphernalia, felony trafficking of marijuana; possession with intent to manufacture, sell or distribute a Schedule VI substance; and manufacturing marijuana.

This is the second teacher in North Carolina linked to drugs this month. Earlier in April, Union County Public School teacher Barney Harris was killed in a shootout with the Sinaloa Mexican drug cartel after he and his brother-in-law attempted to rob the cartel’s stash house.

Brunswick County Schools officials indicated that Teague had been on a leave of absence since Jan. 19 of this year and has had no interaction with students since that date.

The district said she would remain on a leave of absence until they investigate, however, Teague resigned following her arrest. Her resignation violates state statute requiring 30-days notice and the district is required to report her case to the State Board of Education.

According to the district, Teague had taught in Brunswick County Public Schools for 25 years, having been hired in 1996. The district has not issued a formal statement yet.

At the time of her arrest, she was a 6th-grade science and math teacher at Leland Middle School, which she had been assigned to since 2015. The middle school has already removed her profile, however, a cached page exists. According to the now-removed bio, for nine years, Teague taught Second grade at Lincoln Primary School. She also worked at Belville Elementary School teaching second, third and fourth grades.

Teague has a teaching license on file with the state under the name Catherine Lee Neely. It will not expire until June 30, 2022, and covering the licensing areas of Elementary Education (K-6) and Mathematics 6-9.

Teague is the seventh education employee arrest tracked by this website in 2021.

About A.P. Dillon

A.P. Dillon is a freelance journalist and is currently writing at The North State Journal. She resides in the Triangle area of North Carolina. Find her on Twitter: @APDillon_
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