Globe Teacher Arrested On Drug Charges


A fourth-grade teacher from Copper Rim School in Globe was arrested Friday, March 1, and is facing multiple drug charges.

Faye O'Donnell, 49, was booked into the Gila County jail after agents from the Payson unit of the Gila County Narcotics Task Force located crystal methamphetamine and marijuana following a search warrant on her home.

O'Donnell, who has two sons, 17 and 16 years old, was charged with possession of dangerous drugs, possession of dangerous drugs for sale, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia after agents seized an estimated two ounces of methamphetamine and a usable quantity of marijuana.

Narcotics paraphernalia was also located in O'Donnell's classroom at Copper Rim School.

"Our investigation over the last month revealed that O'Donnell was selling methamphetamine," a task force agent said.

O'Donnell posted a $33,000 bond and was released from jail. She has been placed on leave from the school and is not permitted on the campus.

Warrant arrest

Mathew Steven Merdick, 24, of Payson was arrested by the drug task force on an outstanding drug warrant Feb. 28.

Agents from the task force also arrested Merdick's girlfriend, Jessica Jean Klotz, 18, after she told undercover agents that Merdick didn't live with her in the 200 block of East Zurich. However, when the agents began canvassing the neighbors with a photograph of Merdick, he came out of Klotz's apartment and turned himself in.

Merdick, who is on probation, also was charged with possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia following a search of his apartment.

Klotz was arrested and charged with providing false information to a police officer as well as possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

On Feb. 24, task force agents cleared another outstanding drug-related arrest warrant when they took Michael Schultz, 35, of Payson into custody.

Schultz, who is on probation, had a failure to appear warrant served on him for narcotics violations at his residence in the 1000 block of South Ash.

A search of his residence by the Gila County Probation department led to the seizure of a useable quantity of methamphetamine and related drug paraphernalia.

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