Can You Spot the Secret Stash? Teens Becoming Savvier When it Comes to Hiding Drugs & Alcohol

'I'm not trying to make anyone paranoid,' Officer Beth Sanborn says. 'It's just that this is what's out there now.'

The days of zip-close baggies carrying drugs seem to be over, as police and school professionals are finding everyday items that have been transformed by teens to conceal drugs, alcohol and paraphernalia.

One Pennsylvania school resource officer has set out to alert parents of this new trend.

Lower Gwynedd Township Police Officer Beth Sanborn put together an interactive program that recently debuted at Wissahickon High School to show parents how drugs and other contraband can be hiding in plain sight.

School Resource Officer Beth Sanborn debuted an interactive presentation at Wissahickon High School to show parents how normal appearing objects could hide drugs, alcohol and other paraphernalia.

"I'm not trying to make anyone paranoid," Sanborn said. "It's just that this is what's out there now."

Sanborn's program is a simulation of a teenage bedroom that includes more than 100 items such as soda cans, dental floss, hair brushes, deodorant and even Chapstick tubes that can be used to hide drugs.

Drug trends among young people are evolving. In Montgomery County, Lower Gwynedd Police School Resource Officer Beth Sanborn, a mother herself, is offering tips for parents to help them spot the warning signs.

These objects look and feel normal but can be opened to reveal hidden compartments for stashing drugs, alcohol or paraphernalia.

Some of the stash items have also been manipulated to mask the smell of drugs, and some are used not only to conceal drugs but to use them as well.

A new trend among teenagers involves inhaling the same amount of nicotine as a cigarette, using a small device that looks similar to a flash drive. We have a few tips on how you can spot vaping.

"I don't want you to be suspicious of every can of soda or bottle of water, but kids are getting sneaky," Sanborn said.

Police are even struggling to identify all items that teens have been using to conceal drugs.

While most items in teens’ rooms are normal, there may be stash safes hidden in plain sight. Lower Gwynedd police school resource Officer Beth Sanborn is hosting an event Thursday at Wissahickon High School to educate parents on everyday items that are being used to hide what teens don’t want their parents to see.

The Mock Teen Room was set up by the Center for Humanistic Change, a not-for-profit organization based out of Allentown, and paid for by the Kiwanis Club of Ambler

Contact Us