[ This story has been updated.]
Police arrested two child care operators in North Carolina last week after finding pot-laced cookies and candy, heroin, cocaine, more than 100 pounds of marijuana and multiple firearms on site at a Fayetteville day care, WRAL-TV reported.
Officers made the discovery at Tori's Playhouse, a home-based child care center, while they were executing a search warrant July 17. The day care has been state-licensed since June 13, 2017. Moreover, the day care appears to have been the recipient of taxpayer-funded subsidies from the state.
The search was executed after the day care closed for the day. No children were on the premises during the search, Fayetteville Police Department wrote in a news release.
What's the story?
On July 16, police followed up on a monthslong investigation involving drug trafficking organizations.
Members of the gang unit searched an apartment in Fayetteville that led to the arrest of 27-year-old Alvin Davis. Authorities seized two handguns, marijuana, marijuana wax, cocaine, and two handguns. Davis, who posted bond and was released from jail, was charged on multiple counts of drug trafficking, according to FPD.
As they continued the operation, police searched the state-licensed day care center co-operated by Reshod J. Everett, 32, who also works for the U.S. Postal Service, and Victoria L. Everett, 34, who owned and operated the child care center.
Authorities found more than 100 pounds of marijuana, pot-laced gummies, and pot-laced cookies, along with six weapons inside the fully operational day care.
How did state authorities not discover the massive drug stash during inspections?
Last year, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services rated Tori's Playhouse as a three-star day care, on a scale of 1 to 5 stars, according to NCDHHS. The star rating is based on staff education, program standards, and quality standards.
Under North Carolina law, home day care centers are required to pass annual unannounced inspections.
The state's most recent site visit to Tori's Playhouse was completed April 19, 2018.
Two violations were noted on the summary document provided to TheBlaze by NCDHHS.
The first violation showed that Victoria Everett and Reshod Everett had not submitted the required information for their criminal background checks.
A second item showed that Victoria Everett had completed only six of the required 12 hours of on-going training.
The state inspector ordered the violations to be corrected immediately. The day care owner had until May 3 to submit proof of compliance.
The inspector wrote that she observed the children during snack time, nap time, and play time.
Prior to the April inspection, a sanitation inspection was conducted Feb. 16, 2018, and the facility was classified as "superior" with "zero demerits," according to the documents.
Did the day care correct the violations?
On May 7, Victoria Everett submitted a letter to NCDHHS that outlined the steps she'd taken to correct the violations, according to documents that the state provided to TheBlaze.
How did they stay in operation?
It's unclear how the state missed the alleged drug activity in the home, but following TheBlaze's inquiry to NCDHHS on Friday about the drug bust and the owners' arrest, the state suspended the day care facility.
"As a result of the action issued, you must inform all parents of enrolled children that the facility shall close at the end of business today," the letter dated July 20, reads. "Additionally, subsidized child care payments will end today."
"On July 20, 2018, the Division of Child Development and Early Education received information regarding criminal activity at Tori's Playhouse, a family child home operated by Victoria Everett. Based on information obtained, large amounts of narcotics and several firearms were found on the premises of the family child care home.
"On July 17, 2018, Ms. Everett and Reshod Everett, her husband and household member, were criminally charged with multiple felony narcotics offenses, including possession of narcotics, conspiring/trafficking narcotics, and maintaining a dwelling for keeping/selling controlled substances," the letter continued.
The letter went on to say that the Division of Child Development and Early Childhood education had determined that Tori's Playhouse was not a safe and healthy environment for children.
What are the charges?
The pair were arrested and charged on multiple counts of drug possession, drug trafficking, drug manufacturing, maintaining a dwelling for trafficking and other related charges.
A judge ordered a $430,000 secure bond for Reshod Everett and a $287,000 secured bond for Victoria Everett.
Over the course of 36 hours, the Fayetteville police seized more than 100 pounds of marijuana, one-half kilogram of cocaine, over an ounce of heroin, 10 firearms, more than $70,000, and a 2013 Audi Q7 SUV, according to the release.