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Daughter of Jeb Bush Accused of Drug Relapse

September 11, 2002|From Associated Press

ORLANDO, Fla. — Gov. Jeb Bush's 25-year-old daughter was found with what was believed to be crack cocaine at a drug rehabilitation center where she was undergoing court-ordered treatment, police said Tuesday.

If confirmed, it would be Noelle Bush's second lapse since entering rehabilitation and could result in jail.

Police were called to the Center for Drug Free Living in Orlando, where workers gave them a 0.2-gram rock that they said they found in Noelle Bush's shoe, Sgt. Orlando Rolon said.

The rock tested positive for cocaine in a police field test, but Bush was not immediately arrested because police could not get staff members at the rehab center to cooperate and give sworn statements, Rolon said.

A patient had called police, but staffers tried to persuade them to let the center follow its standard policy of handling the matter internally, Rolon said.

The center's president and chief executive, Jerry Feulner, declined to comment Tuesday, citing privacy concerns.

After a meeting in Orlando, the governor said his daughter must "resolve in her heart and mind that she needs to change."

"She needs to accept responsibility. She knows that we love her. She knows a whole lot of people care for her, but it is up to her," he said. Her lawyer, Dean Cannon, did not return calls seeking comment.

She was arrested in January at a pharmacy drive-through window for allegedly trying to buy the anti-anxiety drug Xanax with a fraudulent prescription. She was admitted to the treatment center a month later, with the possibility that charges would be dropped if she completed the program.

In July, she was found with prescription drugs that had been taken from a cabinet at the rehab center. She spent three days in jail before being allowed to return to rehab.

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