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Apr 4, 2016 5:58 PM

Pembroke Academy, police department defend quiet drug arrest of administrator


PEMBROKE - The Pembroke Academy school district and the Pembroke Police Department are defending their actions involving the arrest of a dean who had been found on campus with steroids and heroin.

Rekha Luther, 36 of Manchester, was charged with four counts of possession on Feb. 17. According to court documents, Luther was found in possession of three types of testosterone and heroin on school campus.

Police were called when Luther reported to an administrator that she believed she had lost her needles in the school.

Police did not find needles and believe she misplaced them elsewhere. Police did a search of Luther's personal property, finding steroids in her vehicle and heroin inside her unlocked office.

Parents first heard of the incident through media reports on April 2. Many were frustrated with the school's lack of transparency.

"At least notify us to reassure is that our kids were OK," said parent Jeanne Labarge.

Monday, Pembroke Academy declined an interview and instead issued a statement NH1 News that had been sent to parents.

It read in part:

"We have not made any public announcements regarding this case because it is a personnel matter that under state and federal law the administration must keep confidential."

"Regarding any criminal investigation, that is something that the school is not involved in, and is not privy to unless there is a concern for student safety."

Police Chief Dwayne Gilman said he did not believe the students were ever at risk.

The department does not typically publish press releases over concerns information released could jeopardize future investigations, Gilman said.

"The ultimate goal in life is to find out where the drugs came from and to find out if possible anyone was selling or distributing. Who was buying? That's the name of the game and with the drug problem we have no it's a very important tool," Gilman said.

Luther was relased on $10,000 bail and will appear in court Monday. A person who answered the door at her address declined to comment.

Colleen Shaughnessy is a multimedia journalist for NH1 News. You can email her at cshaughnessy@nh1.com and follow her on Twitter, @ColleenNH1.


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