The dean of New York City's Regis High School, an Upper East Side private Jesuit school entering its hundredth year in January, was arrested and charged with heroin possession in Connecticut late last week.
[UPDATE BELOW] Nicholas deSpoelberch, formerly of Carmel, was questioned by police following suspicious activity in his car on a dead end street in Darien, CT. The Darien Times reports that officers noted the school official’s sluggish behavior and a search of the car revealed several bags containing heroin, as well as numerous pills—including Oxycodone and Clonidine—not prescribed to him. Police say they also found drug paraphernalia in the vehicle.
deSpoelberch had filled the Dean of Students post since 2008 after serving as one of the school's guidance counselors. A graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, he also actively participated in the all-male high school’s athletic department, including an after-school martial arts program. He was released by police on a $2,500 bond and is due back in county court on July 22.
According to police records, deSpoelberch was previously arrested on Labor Day weekend in 2007 on DUI charges in his then-hometown of Carmel.
Regis High School, which has an enrollment of over 500 students, prides itself on a tuition-free Catholic education for gifted tri-state area students. Administrators did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Update: The school issued this statement: "On Tuesday, Regis High School became aware of the July 11th arrest of Nicholas deSpoelberch, who serves as the school’s Dean of Students. Regis High School is just now learning about the allegations against Mr. deSpoelberch, and takes those charges very seriously. Regis has zero tolerance for such activities. Mr. deSpoelberch has been suspended pending further investigation."