Former Hannibal elementary principal wanted on drug charges in c - Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Former Hannibal elementary principal wanted on drug charges in custody

Former Hannibal principal arrested Former Hannibal principal arrested
Marion County Sheriff's Office released this photo of Foust after he was booked. Marion County Sheriff's Office released this photo of Foust after he was booked.
HANNIBAL, Mo. (WGEM) - The former Hannibal elementary principal wanted on drug charges was behind bars Wednesday morning after nearly a week on the run.

The Northeast Missouri Narcotics Task Force says Joshua D. "JD" Foust, 33, was arrested shortly after midnight Wednesday in Hannibal and was being held at the Marion County Jail on a $100,000 cash-only bond.

Talbert said investigators were told Foust was already out of state when they searched his home on Feb. 11. They were told he was in Texas for training related to a new job. According to Talbert, his family was very cooperative and actually went to Texas to bring him back to Hannibal.

"We previously spoke to him on the phone and he agreed to come back (to Hannibal)," Talbert said. "It just took longer than we expected." 

"They were cooperating and getting him to do the right thing if you will, and stop being on the run," Sheriff Jimmy Shinn added.

Officers searched the former A.D. Stowell Elementary School principal's home last Wednesday. It came following a month-and-a-half-long investigation that officers say uncovered enough heroin to make 800 capsules.  

It had a street value of up to $12,000 dollars. Two others have been charged in the case.

Talbert said this was a unique case for the task force.

"In over 18 years with the task force, this was definitely the first time I dealt with someone with a job like he had," Talbert said. "It's a reminder that drugs don't discriminate against any race or at every level of society."

Talbert also said she understands why this case has garnered so much attention.

"I know it's shocking, especially for parents with kids at the school," Talbert said. "But it's a good lesson that this can affect everybody."

Sheriff Shinn calls heroin "the number one" drug that his deputies deal with in Northeast Missouri. Executive Director Jennifer Wilson at the Hannibal Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse says she's seen heroin use in northeast Missouri rise significantly in the last several years.

"It was not something we saw at all," Wilson said. "It is not unusual now. It's one of our first questions - are you using heroin?" 

She believes that's because it's cheap. She says around $10 can buy a bean of heroin, and there's a market for it. And she says once someone starts using, it's extremely difficult to stop.

"People are very sick," Wilson said. "I've had clients describe it to me as their bones hurting. So a lot of times when someone does decide to stop using, the withdrawal are so painful that they go back to using."

Shinn says Foust's arrest is the close of a somewhat unusual case, but to him it proves that drug use can happen with anyone in the community.  

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