Aurora used drug-sniffing dogs 28 times at schools — and community is asking why

A high school student was tackled and handcuffed at an Aurora school last month after a drug-sniffing dog found marijuana edibles in his backpack.

The incident, which Aurora school district officials say they are now investigating, has sparked outrage at the district and prompted a larger conversation about school security as well as the practice of regularly searching schools with a hired K9 trained to sniff out drugs and weapons.

“It made us all feel uncomfortable,” said Marcus Macias, a student at Hinkley High School, who witnessed the incident and spoke to the school board about it. “The way they tackled that kid and put all that force on him, I don’t feel safe being at Hinkley. I didn’t expect that.”

Teachers who also spoke to the school board earlier this month said they couldn’t believe what happened in their school that day, and shared stories about their students being traumatized as they heard the boy screaming that he couldn’t breathe. According to witnesses, the boy was handcuffed by a campus monitor, who is a district employee.

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