New Jersey Art Teacher overdosed in fentanyl

One middle school teacher from New Jersey is currently in the hands of the police after allegedly “overdosing” on Fentanyl. Frank Thompson, 57, is a middle school art instructor at Roosevelt Intermediate School located in Westfield, New Jersey. On November 29, 2022, at about 9 a.m. (EST), Thompson was found lying unconscious on the ground in one of his classes. Although it has already been two months since the incident passed, what are the latest updates on the said teacher? Is Frank Thompson getting suspended from teaching or is he completely fired now that he is arrested?

Frank Thompson
Frank Thompson, Photo Courtesy of Daily Mail UK

According to authorities who responded to the scene, Frank Thompson was found “unresponsive and unconscious” while lying still on the ground. Furthermore, his students observed that something was wrong with Thompson moments before he collapsed. One of the responders to the emergency was Fortunato Riga, the school’s resource officer. Riga noticed that Thompson showed signs of drug overdose which was later found to be an overuse of Fentanyl. As the investigation was going on, the police also discovered “a quantity of a suspected controlled substance” together with several drug paraphernalia inside Thompson’s closet.

What is Fentanyl and what are its effects on its user

Fentanyl is a powerful opioid drug to ease the pain. Mostly, it is included as an analgesic or as anesthesia with morphine-like effects. Basically, it’s a medical drug that sounds extremely dangerous when overused.

Photo Courtesy of Everyday Health

Fentanyl act as a pain killer but if a user has overdosed, he or she may experience sudden choking, peculiar paling of skin, loss of consciousness, and even death.

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Every case charged against Thompson and what this could mean

The Westfield Police Department has already issued an arrest and filed criminal charges against the 57-year-old Thompson earlier this week (January 6, 2023).

  • Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance (fentanyl), 2C:35-10A(1) (a crime of the third degree)
  • Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, 2C:36-2 (a disorderly person offense)
  • Endangering Welfare of Children, 2C:24-4A(2) (a crime of the third degree)

Laws in New Jersey state that there are specific criminal charges that could result in an automatic ban or suspension to any individual to teach in an institution or even obtain a certificate to teach or work in a public school system. One of which is the crime related to an action Endangering the Welfare of Children, which was one of Thompson’s cases. So, to answer the question if he is suspended – Yes, he definitely is. Although it wasn’t announced by the Roosevelt Intermediate School, this is already evident according to New Jersey laws. Not only is he suspended from teaching, but he is also permanently barred from ever teaching in an institution.

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Sources: CBS News, NBC News, Westfield Police Department
John Micheal (sometimes called JM or Mike) has been writing various types of professional articles for almost 2 years now. He is an avid sports fan and has been following the NBA since the early 2000s. He also loves playing a lot of video games like DotA 2, Valorant, but MMOs have a special places in JM's heart. Not only is he a huge fan of basketball and video games, he also loves movies and tv shows. He is a huge MARVEL and MCU fan plus he is into a lot of superhero stuff.