Naval Academy expels more midshipmen for allegedly using 'spice'
April 1st, 2011
03:37 PM ET

Naval Academy expels more midshipmen for allegedly using 'spice'

Five more midshipmen have been expelled from the U.S. Naval Academy for allegedly using "spice," a mixture of herbs and a synthetic chemical similar to the chemical THC in marijuana.

Last January, CNN reported seven midshipmen had been expelled as part on an investigation of spice use at the academy. Now a spokesperson at the Academy confirms the number of expulsions has reached 12.

"There have been four male 2nd class (juniors), six male 3rd class (sophomores), one male 4th class (freshman), and one female 3rd class midshipmen separated in conjunction with this investigation (totaling 11 males, 1 female)," according to Jennifer M. Erickson, an academy spokeswoman.

The 3rd class female was the most recent separation. She was expelled Monday.

The investigation of spice use at the academy began last fall and is continuing.

"We will not speculate about any potential, additional expulsions," Erickson said.

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Filed under: Military • U.S. Navy
soundoff (109 Responses)
  1. Ex-military now military dad

    The issue is not whether to legalize MJ, the problem is critical afety violations if you come on your shift buzzed from chemicals. Active duty Navy and eventually Midshipmen will be at sea with a serious job, and a host of firepower at their command. Midshipmen will be Navy Ensigns and Marine 2nd Lieutenants and have to lead by example. Being impared when defending your ship or platoon is a serious lapse in responsiblity.

    I have a daughter at USNA and don't understand how someone who is receiving a $500,000 college education is willing to throw that away for a puff of the 'weed'. Fortunately those that ultimately get commissioned have had their ranks thinned by natural selection, those that shouldn't be put in command.

    April 1, 2011 at 6:30 pm | Report abuse |

      Agree–these midshipmen have to live up to a higher standard than the rest of the citizens of the US. They are expected to have better judgement and higher level of responsibility than the typical college student. They will be leading others, and have to lead by example.

      What many college students and young people do routinely would be considered behavior worthy of expulsion at the US Naval Academy.

      The issue is not legalization of marijuana, as many posters are emphasizing. Do you want your military pilot on mind altering substances? How about your emergency room doctor or your surgeon? Do you want them caring for you when they are drunk (alcohol is legal) or when they are under the influence of another substance?

      Naval Academy midshipmen should be held to a higher standard just as many members of other professional groups.

      April 9, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ty

      but it is okay to drink? such a double standard

      April 12, 2011 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • Ty

      No one has said they were using while operating any military equipment, weapons or sensitive info

      April 12, 2011 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
    • randumbguy

      There's another perspective .... the current US financial woes (budget, deficit, debt) come about in part from poor investment choices. One reason for taxes is to support investment in projects that the private sector will not risk or are of too large a scale. I don't mind taxes as long as they are invested wisely - the academies need to show that they are making good investments. Tripping out on synthetics is not showing respect for my financial investment in them; send 'em packing. The academies are a sweetheart deal and like it or not, you don't get to screw up.

      April 18, 2011 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Angela

      TY, learn the military standards, while alcohol is legal, the regulation is to stop consuming it 8 hours before your duty shift starts, which even then if you followed that rule, you can still be disciplined for being intoxicated when you show up to work. Its for the safety of yourself and others. Drunk in public falls under an entirely different set of rules, yep, sailors are going to go out and drink, as long as they are not mis-representing the navy, whats the harm in it?? I went out and drank as an AD member of the Navy, had a blast, but never did we act like total morons in public when drinking. And sorry, yes, while midshipman may not be operating an air craft, or a ship every day while they are students, that doesn't mean they are not in training to prepare for the day they are. Enlisted sailors don't get to go out drinking in bootcamp, even though they arent operating major weapons and ship board systems there either.

      April 25, 2011 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Jeff Frank - Ohio

    Try aaan legaalizeee whaaaaaaaaaaaat?

    April 1, 2011 at 7:05 pm | Report abuse |
  3. chelo

    I agree with military dad

    April 1, 2011 at 7:14 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Mmmmm

    S p I c e

    April 1, 2011 at 8:27 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Mmmmm


    April 1, 2011 at 8:28 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Mmmmm


    April 1, 2011 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Sheryl

    It's all natural, and anyway they just do it on boats.
    Anything natural is so...well, natural.

    April 1, 2011 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hannah

      Have you ever smoked the stuff? It's dangerous. I tried it and I thought my head was going to explode. It's nothing even like pot. I would liken it to a bad trip....never again.

      April 22, 2011 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Sheryl

    Or herbal.
    One could say, "herbal."

    April 1, 2011 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Scottish Mama

    (I don't know who's posting this, but please stop!)

    Scottish Mama
    March 31st, 2011 6:30 pm ET

    Any of ye fine gents want some cobra venom laced cunny?

    April 1, 2011 at 10:34 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Al Capone

    Scottish Mama, now look this is a good web-site, and we don't need no characters to give da site any atmosphere. Now why don't you take a hike while yous still got your two legs in good working condition.

    April 2, 2011 at 12:19 am | Report abuse |
  11. Nelson

    HA! HA!

    April 2, 2011 at 6:53 am | Report abuse |
  12. Sheryl

    My hero!

    April 2, 2011 at 7:26 am | Report abuse |
  13. Jim Brieske

    You don't know what a hero is Missy

    April 2, 2011 at 8:36 am | Report abuse |
  14. JAZZ

    My son is going into the Navy in June and they asked him if he ever smoked marijuana and his recruiter told him no matter how many times they ask you or say they'll find out, say no. The Navy as our expirence has shown are dead set against the use of it at all. I believe it's a good thing to be that tough, U have to set bounderies somewhere.

    April 2, 2011 at 9:12 am | Report abuse |


    April 2, 2011 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |

      wow the censorship is amazing!!! you can even say the word (s p i c e)

      i was going to say ( old $pice stinks... )

      April 2, 2011 at 9:24 am | Report abuse |
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