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Former IU student faces drug charges, contributed to TKE IU chapter suspension



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The IU chapter of Tau Kappa Epsilon will be suspended until 2021. Matthieu Picard Buy Photos

A former IU student is facing multiple drug-related charges after allegedly dealing drugs out of the IU Tau Kappa Epsilon Gamma-Kappa chapter house, contributing to the suspension of the chapter.

A probable cause affidavit filed Feb. 21 outlines the charges and investigation against 20-year-old Levi J. Lewis. 

Lewis has not been a student at IU since Jan. 10, 2018, IU spokesperson Chuck Carney said. He also said this month’s suspension of the TKE fraternity largely stems from this incident.

“Indiana University immediately acted to investigate the alleged behavior upon learning of it and worked to support the IU Police Department in determining the facts of the case,” Carney said in a written statement. “These are serious allegations not in line with the values of IU and certainly not acceptable for the safety and well-being of our students. We support the actions of TKE International in closing the chapter given the nature of these charges."

Investigators with the Evansville Police Department looking into a separate case in December 2017 tipped IUPD off about Lewis, IUPD’s Capt. Craig Munroe said. 

EPD notified IUPD on Dec. 30, 2017, of a homicide investigation allegedly involving Lewis. Lewis and Michael Pardee, who is not an IU student, went to Evansville, Indiana, to sell drugs, and Pardee was killed while there, according to the affidavit.

An EPD detective told IUPD that Pardee’s truck was parked in the TKE parking lot and that it may contain drugs, according to the affidavit. IUPD found and searched the car. 

In the car, they discovered 14 one-pound bags of marijuana, more than $3,000 cash, 26 Vyvanse pills prescribed to Lewis, vape canisters and a notebook and papers appearing to be ledgers, among other things, according to the document.

The same detective told IUPD on Dec. 31, 2017, that EPD was granted a search warrant for Lewis’ phone. On the device, they found evidence he was involved in “large scale narcotics sales,” some of which took place at the TKE house, according to the affidavit. 

IUPD officers then searched Lewis’ room in the fraternity house and found smoking devices, scales, a mason jar with 12 grams of marijuana stems, a plastic bag with marijuana weighing two grams, THC vape cartridges, a vape pen, two plastic bags with marijuana residue, four nuggets of marijuana edibles weighing four grams and a small amount of suspected cocaine, among other things, according to the court document.

An IUPD officer began reviewing the EPD's recovered text messages around Jan. 18, 2018, according to document. 

Less than a month later, on Feb. 8, IU's TKE chapter was suspended.

In messages beginning around December 2016, according to the affidavit, there were numerous references to making and selling marijuana edibles, including brownies, chocolates and moonrocks.

The affidavit refers to moonrocks as a slang term for marijuana buds dipped in THC oil or something similar. 

Examples of text messages with people discussing drugs are listed in the affidavit, which reflect other conversations not listed, according to the document.

On March 8, 2017, someone reached out to Lewis for a friend who was looking to give Lewis half an ounce of marijuana, most likely, to make brownies with for at least $50.

“Yeah lol thats cool,” Lewis responded. “I have 60 brownies ready rn you can come now if u want.”

The person responded, “Oh shit that’s hype, forsure. Be there soon.”

IUPD also found images of marijuana and edibles Lewis sent to individuals, as well as a screenshot of a moonrocks recipe. 

The IDS has reached out to TKE's Grand Chapter at their international headquarters for comment.

This article will be updated as more information becomes available. 

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