Three 16-year-old girls were arrested last week in Springfield for allegedly being in possession of marijuana at an off-campus event.
Officer Bud Walker, a spokesman for Fairfax County Police, say the teenagers were arrested at Waterford Receptions, an event venue that was hosting a regional high school leadership conference at the time of their arrests last Tuesday.
They were each charged with possession of marijuana, a misdemeanor.
On that day, Waterford Receptions hosted a fall leadership conference for several DECA (Distributive Education Clubs of America) clubs in Northern Virginia, part of an international group that trains young entrepreneurs in marketing, hospitality and other fields.
Walker said officers responded to the address at 11:11 a.m. Tuesday. The conference was held at the location from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Ryan Witzig, the DECA specialist for the Virginia chapters, confirmed several Fairfax County schools were represented at the DECA conference in Springfield, including Annandale High School, Chantilly High School, George C. Marshall High School, Hayfield Secondary School, James Madison High School, Lake Braddock Secondary, McLean High School, Mount Vernon High School, Oakton High School, Robinson Secondary School, Tysons Classroom and West Springfield High School.
Fairfax County Public Schools spokesman John Torre declined to comment on the incident, citing student privacy policies.
According to the Fairfax County Public Schools Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook, students who use or possess marijuana while at a school-sponsored activity receive a 10-day suspension from school and a recommendation for expulsion.
The handbook says the division superintendent then holds a hearing "to determine whether a disciplinary action other than expulsion is appropriate."
It goes on to say "in any case, the School Board or Division Superintendent may determine, based on the facts of the particular case, that special circumstances exist and that another disciplinary action is appropriate."