6 City Lifeguards Caught Smoking Pot, Officials Say

By Katie Honan and Murray Weiss  on July 8, 2014 7:10am

 The NYPD said the lifeguards were parked in a car during the July 4 rain storm.
The NYPD said the lifeguards were parked in a car during the July 4 rain storm.
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Spencer Platt/Getty Images

FAR ROCKAWAY — Maybe it was high tide.

Half a dozen New York City lifeguards were caught smoking pot on their lunch break on rainy July 4th — one of the most popular beach days of the year, according to sources and the police department.

Two of the accused reefer-toking rescuers resigned after the Independence Day incident, which took place as rain and wind from passing Hurricane Arthur whipped the shores.

A 17-year-old female lifeguard was charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, a misdemeanor, and a violation for drug paraphernalia after police found two marijuana cigarettes in the car she and the other guards huddled in on Seagirt Boulevard and Beach 10th Street in Far Rockaway, according to the NYPD.

Officers found two bags of marijuana inside the console of the 2002 Suburban and a pipe with residue when they searched the car about 2:15 p.m., the sources said.

The teen, who had worked as a lifeguard for two years, and another guard were given tickets, but the charges for the other four were not immediately clear.

A spokesman for the Parks Department said the lifeguards were on lunch break and the beaches were open. 

"Two of the lifeguards have resigned," the spokesman said. "We are also investigating the circumstances behind this incident."

It was not clear which of the guards resigned.

The Parks Department is awaiting the results of the investigation before making employment decisions about the lifeguards, and it wasn't clear if they had returned to work.

A spokeswoman from their union, Local 461, did not immediately respond to an inquiry.

Reached by phone on Monday, the female lifeguard said she didn't work on the Fourth of July. She refused to say if she still worked for the Parks Department. The teen was not one of the two guards who resigned, an official said. 

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