Eleven people were arrested on drug charges at an electronic dance music festival in Monroe County this past weekend, authorities said Wednesday.
The suspects were arrested at the Elements Music & Arts Festival, which was held Friday through Monday at Pocono International Raceway in Long Pond — the second straight year the venue hosted the event.
Those charged range in ages from 23 to 46 and hail from various states, including three from Pennsylvania, according to a news release from the Pocono Mountain Regional Police Department.
The charges include the sale, delivery, and possession of illegal narcotics including LSD, molly/MDA, psilocybin mushrooms, cocaine, and ketamine, according to the release.
The Pocono Mountain Regional police said officers formulated a proactive plan to this year’s festival after responding to overdose calls, making several drug arrests, and seizing various drugs at last year’s event.
“Police determined that the event involved a large segment of patrons accustomed to the use of illegal narcotics along with local drug dealers and drug dealers that come into the area from out of state,” police said in the release.
The department said it enlisted the help of the Pennsylvania State Police, Monroe County District Attorney’s Office, Monroe County Drug Task Force, Pocono Township Police Department, and the Stroud Area Regional Police Department to take a “proactive approach.”
Police were sent to the festival to respond to a drug overdose on Friday, the morning of the event’s first day, the department said. Arrests followed over the next three days, police said.
After investigating two of the people arrested, officers obtained a search warrant to search their tents and vehicles, police said. Officers discovered evidence of a larger scale of drug dealing, authorities said.
Security at the event also searched attendees as they entered the concert area and later turned drugs over to police, authorities said. That included fentanyl, powder and crack cocaine, methamphetamine, ecstasy/MDMA, molly/MDA, ketamine, psilocybin mushrooms, LSD, marijuana/THC products/edibles/oils and waxes, nitrous oxide, large varieties of prescription pills and unknown tablets, and “exorbitant amounts“ of drug paraphernalia, police said.
Some of the substances have yet to be identified and more charges are likely to come, authorities said.
Efforts to reach the raceway and festival organizers for comment Wednesday were not immediately successful.
Brent Johnson may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him at @johnsb01.