Auburn police found 5 pounds of marijuana, various illegal prescription medications, a 9 mm handgun and approximately $3,000 at an Auburn apartment in the 1600 block of Downs War, off West Longleaf Drive.
Arrested were Justin E. Leitstein, 21, of Boca Raton, Fla.; Christopher C. Carter, 20, of Decatur; Dorian J. McFarland, 20, of Kokomo, Ind.; and Justin N. Perez, 20, of Mesa, Ariz.
“For this area, it was a substantial drug bust. You don’t see 5 pounds of marijuana here in Auburn every day, at least we don’t,” said Tommy Dawson, Auburn police chief.
Perez confirmed in a conversation with The Plainsman that Leitstein and Carter are current students at Auburn University. Perez last attended the University in spring 2010 and is currently the manager at Little Caesers of Auburn.
Leitstein has been charged with trafficking marijuana, first-degree possession of marijuana, possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. Carter has been charged with trafficking marijuana, and McFarland and Perez have both been charged with possession of drug paraphernalia.
The bust took place at approximately 10:30 a.m. Monday.
“We try to serve our warrants when they are least expected,” Dawson said. “We knew they wouldn’t be expecting us at 10:30 in the morning.”
He said there was some prior investigation involved, and it took a few hours to obtain the warrant.
The next step for the four men is a preliminary hearing.
“We have a court date in about one month, but I am not sure what will happen after that,” Perez said.
Auburn students Leitstein and Carter may also have to face a hearing with the University.
Aileen Perez, graduate assistant of student conduct, said the University and the city have two completely separate processes when handling students involved in crime.
“The criminal process ensured if you violated the law, but the University ensured if you violated the code,” Aileen said.
Students involved in a crime which the University has received a complaint about can choose a hearing process or admitting responsibility to violating the code and completing the sanctions. Aileen said the hearing consists of a panel of three Auburn University faculty and two studentsfrom the student discipline committee.
While three of the four men arrested attend or have attended Auburn University, Dawson said Auburn isn’t a bad area.
“We are as good as any institution of our size at combating drugs,” Dawson said.” We have a good group of students here in Auburn, and we want to keep it this way,” Dawson said.