University of Montana Grizzlies starting offensive tackle Trevor Poole faces a felony drug charge after allegedly buying two club drug pills at the weekend Disco Bloodbath III party.
Poole, who was kicked off the team Sunday within hours of being booked into the Missoula County jail, was released on his own recognizance Monday on a charge of criminal possession of dangerous drugs.
The all-night party near the Wye, described in charging documents as a rave, featured a heavy law enforcement presence, something the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office took pains to announce in advance. In addition to a “gantlet” of law enforcement vehicles outside the party, undercover officers roamed within, sheriff’s spokesman Detective Jason Johnson said Monday.
Poole was among three people arrested at the party and charged with felony drug offenses.
Missoula Drug Task Force officers at the party “observed a male later identified as Trevor M. Poole, engaged in a ‘hand to hand transaction’ involving the exchange of cash for a plastic baggie,” according to the charging documents filed Monday by Deputy Missoula County Attorney Shaun Donovan.
Poole admitted to officers that he had two “molly” pills in his pocket, Donovan’s affidavit said. Molly is a street name for a version of Ecstacy.
“He also admitted purchasing the pills that night from a male who offered to sell him the drug,” the affidavit said.
The allegation against Poole, 20, a redshirt sophomore from Spokane, mandated “immediate, indefinite dismissal,” under UM’s new Student Athlete Code of Conduct, imposed earlier this year, according to UM athletic director Kent Haslam.
“He’s humbled by what happened and embarrassed,” Poole’s attorney, Paul Ryan, said Monday. “He’s going to work hard to try and restore his credibility.”
Poole’s father, Scott, and uncle, Shawn, both played for the Grizzlies.
The arrest comes at a time of heightened scrutiny of UM’s football program, which is under investigation by the NCAA for alleged violations, which have not been made public.
Two other people face felony drug charges as a result of arrests at Disco Bloodbath III, which was held north of Missoula off U.S. Highway 93 near the Wye.
Matthew Tyler Rardin, 28, of St. Ignatius, was ordered held on $50,000 bail Monday on a charge of criminal distribution of dangerous drugs. Rardin allegedly sold 4 grams of a street drug to an undercover officer at the party. After being arrested, authorities found two pills and $883 in cash, according to charging documents.
At Rardin’s initial appearance Monday in Missoula County Justice Court, Donovan said Rardin has six previous drug convictions, two of them felonies.
Kyle Don Nelson, 24, of Missoula, also was charged with criminal distribution of dangerous drugs after he allegedly tried to sell a single “molly” tablet to an undercover officer at the party. Nelson was released on his own recognizance Monday.
Criminal distribution of dangerous drugs, the charge filed against Nelson and Rardin, carries a maximum penalty of between 10 years and life in Montana State Prison and a $50,000 fine.
Criminal possession of dangerous drugs, filed against Poole, is punishable by up to five years in prison and/or a $50,000 fine.
Reporter Gwen Florio can be reached at 523-5268, firstname.lastname@example.org or @CopsAndCourts.