Five District of Columbia police recruits were suspended yesterday after results of a urine test administered a month ago indicated they had used marijuana, police officials said.
The officers, whose one-year probationary period (required of all recruits) would end in December, were placed on administrative leave with pay, according to Lt. Hiram Brewton, D.C. police public information officer.
The four men and one woman face possible dismissal Oct. 28, depending on the results of a follow-up investigation that will involve interviews with each officer but no additional tests, police said.
The officers were part of a class of about 180 recruits, 39 of whom were suspended last April for failure to pass a similar drug test. All but four of those 39 were exonerated following an investigation, police said. None of the five recruits suspended yesterday was among that earlier group, Brewton said.
The test that led to yesterday's suspension was part of routine testing of probationary officers and was the last such test this class of recruits was required to undergo before their permanent assignment to the force.
Capt. Donald Christian, chief of the department's personnel division, said the test is designed to reveal use of marijuana, barbiturates or amphetamines within seven days before it is administered.