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Utah County Sheriff's Office

Police arrest parents that gave teen pot to 'help him in school'

By Annie Knox  |  Posted Apr 20th, 2017 @ 9:52pm


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SPANISH FORK — Police say parents of a 14-year-old son who allowed the boy to smoke marijuana have been arrested at their home.

Edwin Lee Steward and Valerie Steward, both 37, were booked into Utah County jail Tuesday for investigation of felony child endangerment and misdemeanor charges of contributing to delinquency of a minor, marijuana possession and drug paraphernalia possession.

The couple told police they allow their son to smoke a joint or two at night if he goes to class and makes good grades, said Utah County Sheriff's Sgt. Spencer Cannon. The parents also said they left marijuana around the home, Cannon said, explaining they used the drug to alleviate medical issues and believed it helped their son focus in school.

Valerie Steward was convicted in 2015 of drug possession and knowingly producing, dispensing or manufacturing a controlled substance.

Spanish Fork police and the Utah County sheriff's deputies served a search warrant at the home on Tuesday after months of investigating drug activity there, the agencies said in a Thursday prepared statement.

"You could smell the immediate strong odor of marijuana" that night, Cannon said.

Fifteen officers conducting the raid found about two ounces of marijuana, pipes and herb grinders, as well as a handgun and three rifles, Cannon said.

Another man in the home at the time of the raid, Wesley Morse Vivian, 35, was the owner of the firearms, officers said, and was booked into jail on suspicion of felony firearm possession by a restricted person, and misdemeanor drug possession. He is believed to be a friend of the couple.

It was not immediately clear if the suspects had attorneys as of Thursday. Cannon said they bonded out of jail and the county attorney was weighing charges.

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