2 at Lakefill charged with possession of marijuana

Helena Oh

Two Northwestern students were arrested early Friday morning at the Lakefill after University Police found marijuana in their possession.

UP officers found Weinberg freshmen Wayne Fritz and Ryan O’Hara, and another student near the foot-bridge of the Lakefill at about 1:20 a.m., said Assistant Chief Daniel McAleer of University Police. The Lakefill closes at 10:00 p.m.

Fritz reached for his left pant pocket while the two officers approached, McAleer said.

The officers noticed a glass pipe containing what they thought was marijuana residue on the ground nearby. They also said Fritz and O’Hara smelled like marijuana smoke.

Police conducted a pat-down search of Fritz and found less than 2.5 grams of a green leafy substance that later tested positive for cannabis, McAleer said. Possession of this amount of marijuana is a misdemeanor.

Fritz also received a citation for possessing a fake Texas driver’s license in his wallet, McAleer said, which Fritz admitted he used to buy alcohol in Evanston bars.

Police searched O’Hara and found a small amount of a green leafy substance that later tested positive for cannabis, McAleer said. The third student possessed nothing illegal and was released. No one was charged in possession of the pipe.

Fritz and O’Hara were released at 2:45 a.m. the same morning without bail because the “charges were minor,” McAleer said, “(and) the subjects are tied to the community.”

They could also face separate university disciplinary action for violating NU’s drug policy, said Mary Desler, dean of students.

“It doesn’t matter what the (Circuit) Court decides, we can still take disciplinary action,” Desler said.

Possible outcomes include disciplinary probation, housing probation, suspension or more serious offenses like expulsion, said Lupita Temiquel, an NU judicial affairs officer.

“(The punishment) depends on the severity of the circumstances and if the students have a disciplinary history at NU,” Temiquel said. “It can range.”

Fritz and O’Hara are scheduled to appear May 18 at Circuit Court in Skokie.

Reach Helena Oh at [email protected]