A fifth Wesleyan University student has been arrested amid an investigation into overdoses on the so-called party drug, Molly, or MDMA, that sent almost a dozen people to the hospital over the weekend of Feb. 21 and 22.
Eleven Wesleyan students and guests people were rushed to Middlesex Hospital on Sunday, Feb. 22 due to "complications arising from the use of a version of the drug Molly, a refined and more powerful form of Ecstasy (MDMA)," Wesleyan University President Michael Roth said in a letter to the school community.
Police reports describing the investigation that led to arrests say one person who became ill showed signs of cardiac arrest after possibly ingesting drugs at a party the night before. Everyone who was hospitalized has since been released.
Abhimanyu Janamanchi, 21, of Rockville, Maryland, turned himself in at Middletown Police headquarters on Friday and has been charged with two counts of distribution of a hallucinogen, two counts of possession of hallucinogen, possession of a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell.
He is the fifth student to be arrested in the case.
"We have been informed by the Middletown Police Department that a fifth Wesleyan student has been arrested in connection with the drug poisoning incidents on Feb. 22. Given the nature of the charges, we immediately suspended this student pending a formal hearing. Wesleyan takes very seriously allegations concerning the distribution of dangerous drugs, and we will continue to cooperate with state and local officials to do everything we can to make our community as safe as possible," the school said in a statement.
Within days of investigating, police arrested the first four Wesleyan students, three of whom were studying neuroscience.
The students, identified as Eric Lonergan, 21; Andrew Olson, 20; Zachary Kramer, 21; and Rama Agha Al Nakib, 20, were arrested on drug charges and immediately suspended from the school pending a formal hearing. Nakib is due in court on March 24.
Lonergan, Kramer and Olson pleaded not guilty and are due back in court on April 21.
Bond for Janamanchi was set at $50,000 and he is due back in court on April 24.
Following the incidents, university officials sent emails to the student body imploring them to avoid MDMA and other risky drugs that can pose real health hazards.
Police are continuing to investigate.