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Student's Story About Shooting A Pet Dinosaur With A Gun Ends In Suspension, Arrest

from the due-to-administrative-actions,-this-year's-class-reunion-will-be-held-at-the dept

Another school weapons policy results in another ridiculous outcome. Dinosaurs -- pet dinosaurs -- are involved. As are lawyers, a defensive police captain and a silent set of school administrators. (h/t to Techdirt reader Violynne, who sent this in with the note "Tim's going to love this one: guns and dinosaurs!" And I do. Even though I might be the wrong Tim.)

Police were summoned to a high school after a boy wrote a story about using a gun to kill a dinosaur. The boy was searched, suspended from school, and subsequently handcuffed and arrested when he did not handle the interrogation calmly.
The boy is 16, so not quite as young as that sentence makes it sound. He also suffers from a unspecified learning disorder and the "story" was written in a resource class that was supposed to aid him with that problem. Here's a few more details about the creative writing project gone stupidly wrong.
Alex Stone, 16, said he was assigned to come up with a fictional story for a creative writing assignment at Summerville High School on August 19, 2014. The brief assignment involved writing a few lines that were supposed to mimic a social media post; a “status update” drafted on paper.

Stone’s submission discussed himself and a fictitious dinosaur that lived next door to him. He wrote that he used a gun to kill the dinosaur.

“I killed my neighbor’s pet dinosaur, and, then, in the next status I said I bought the gun to take care of the business,” Stone said to NBC 12.
As is the case with most stories involving non-threats being portrayed as threats, those reading Stone's words as a threat removed the context around them. This was quite a feat, considering the teacher who expressed concern to administrators had all the context right in front of her. It's just that she stripped it away when emailing school officials.
According to an incident report, a resource teacher identified as Jessica Lewis emailed Assistant Principal Preston Giet on Monday evening to tell him she discovered a reference to a gun while going over students' assignments.

"The email stated that the suspect had written in a classroom assignment that he had 'bought a gun to take care of business,'" the report said.
A "school resource officer" was summoned (which basically means a moonlighting/specially-assigned police officer was summoned). School officials then passed on the information to the rest of the police department, which arrived to question Stone, search his locker, his book bag and his person. His mother wasn't informed of this until after it happened. In addition, Stone, despite proving to be no threat, was arrested and suspended for the rest of the week.

It looks like the police arrested Stone for his supposed gun threat, but the Summerville PD claims that isn't true.
"The information that is being reported is grossly incorrect in reference to what led to the juvenile being charged," said Capt. Jon Rogers in a Summerville police statement released on Thursday."The charges do not stem from anything involving a dinosaur or writing assignment, but the student's conduct."
OK, then. Here's the extent of Stone's "conduct," according to the police themselves.
According to police, when Stone was asked by school officials about the comment written on the assignment, he became "very irate" and said it was a joke.

A Summerville Police Department report states that Stone continued to be disruptive and was placed in handcuffs, and was told that he was being detained for disturbing schools.
It would appear that Stone was only "disturbing" school officials who seemed intent on finding some evidence of his desire to shoot people and was understandably frustrated that they wouldn't believe it wasn't some sort of threat. Whatever disturbance Stone caused was limited to a single office. There was no reason for anyone to claim, much less believe, that his written assignment, or his behavior inside that office, was "disturbing" his classmates, other classes or anyone else not directly involved.

This is the totality of the school's response to the situation.
Pat Raynor, spokeswoman for Dorchester District 2, said on Thursday she could not comment on the circumstances surrounding the incident on the advice of the school district's attorney.
Good advice, considering the situation has now expanded to include the media and Stone's lawyer, who plans to challenge both the suspension and the legality of the school and police department's actions.

More commentary was provided by Ken Trump, president of National School Safety and Security Services, who trains school administrators in emergency preparedness.
"There is a point for discretion in the consequences for what you find in your investigation," Trump said. "That's when you have to factor in age and developmental issues and the context in which the comment or threat was made."
Discretion is the better part of valor emergency preparedness, but Trump doesn't actually mean what he says here. What he actually means is discretion is the better part of having your school shot up because you failed to overreact properly.
"Comments that were made by children a couple decades ago pre-Columbine, pre 9/11, pre-Sandy Hook would never rise to a suspension expulsion or prosecution," he said. "Parents see this as criminalizing the behavior but the other side of it is security and school officials can't afford to make one mistake and have a credible plot slip through the cracks that leave people killed."
Better safe than sorry, no matter how many non-threatening students you have to suspend and/or arrest. And if these students aren't thrilled with being searched and interrogated over written words deliberately robbed of context, you can just toss them to local law enforcement and let them flip through the law books until they find a charge that can be beaten to fit and painted to match.

Once again, I'm not saying even questionable incidents like these shouldn't be investigated. But the end result of the investigation shouldn't be a suspension or an arrest when nothing incriminating turns up. And there's certainly no excuse for not contacting parents when something like this happens. Deliberately excluding them is not only dishonest, but it's cowardly. It gives the appearance that the school would rather steamroll students than allow another possibly adversarial viewpoint into the "discussion."


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
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    Vidiot (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 8:36am

    Guilty as charged

    "Became irate..."; there's the true crime here. Failure to show humble submission when confronted with idiotic charges.

    Much akin to last week's "... outright challenges to my authority."

     

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  2.  
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    Violynne (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 8:51am

    It's extremely frightening when you view this article next to the militarization of our police forces.

    "GET DOWN ON THE FLOOR, ASSHOLE! YOU'RE UNDER ARREST FOR SHOOTING A DINOSAUR!"

    ***

    Wrong Tim? I would think both Tims would enjoy it. ;)

     

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  3.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 9:06am

    I am so glad...

    That I don't go to school anymore.

    Sheesh, I remember when I was 7, someone had a knife in the park and ran with it, the lifeguards (swimming pool was connected to the park) simply took it away and contacted the kid's parents.

     

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    Ninja (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:19am

    Well, it all depends on what dinosaur he shot. Was it some murder-type such as velociraptors or t-rexes? If so he's actually a hero and saved many people pooping on public toilets!

    (In all seriousness I'd ask the cops if they made sure the dinosaur wasn't actually threatening and the kid did a public service. In my most serious tone.)

     

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  5.  
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    Dale (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:26am

    If he had just followed the nice policeman's instructions and 'confessed' that he really meant shooting fellow students, then everything would have turned out OK. That he insisted on telling the truth.... Well, that's his own fault, now isn't it?

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:35am

    "Parents see this as criminalizing the behavior but the other side of it is security and school officials can't afford to make one mistake and have a credible plot slip through the cracks that leave people killed."

    Instead they will annoy parents, and end up with teachers killed, when some parent takes violent exception to their child being branded a criminal.

     

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  7.  
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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:38am

    "The charges do not stem from anything involving a dinosaur or writing assignment, but the student's conduct."

    If you lack the education this child is now being denied.
    He wrote a story.
    A teacher, under stupid pressure to find threats everywhere, reported the magic words.
    Without bothering to look at the context, you snatched a child out of class and I am SURE that officer was properly trained to handle a child with different needs.
    When placed under stress (asshole with a gun yelling at me trying to find out when I'm gonna shoot up the school) a CHILD might act out because you refuse to accept the situation isn't want you want it to be.

    Zero Intelligence are what these policies lead to.

     

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  8.  
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    Keroberos (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:44am

    I wonder how log it will be before one of these overreactions causes the very thing they are allegedly trying to prevent?

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:45am

    "Comments that were made by children a couple decades ago pre-Columbine, pre 9/11, pre-Sandy Hook would never rise to a suspension expulsion or prosecution," he said. "Parents see this as criminalizing the behavior but the other side of it is security and school officials can't afford to make one mistake and have a credible plot slip through the cracks that leave people killed."


    Of course they see it as "criminalizing the behavior". You HAVE criminalized it. You used to not prosecute something, and now you do. What else would you call it?

    And if you think this was a "credible plot", you shouldn't be anywhere near children.

    Also. He was arrested by armed officers who had deluded themselves into thinking that he might be planning to shoot up the school. Under those circumstances, that arrest might actually be quite dangerous for the student. If he had some sort of bulge under his clothing and had reached for it, this may very well have been a situation where the officials "make one mistake" that "leaves people killed".

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:48am

    Re:

    "Back away from the door and get on the floor! Someone in here shot the dinosaur!"

     

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  11.  
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    DogBreath, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:49am

    Re:

    "school officials can't afford to make one mistake"


    Reply with:


    The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997)

    John Hammond: Don't worry, I'm not making the same mistakes again.

    Dr. Ian Malcolm: No, you're making all new ones.



    because that is something even a small-brained dinosaur can understand.

     

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  12.  
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    Roger Strong (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:50am

    Sounds like the school officials need "training and guidance."

     

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  13.  
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    Gumnos (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:50am

    I mean, come on…

    Killing just one dinosaur would destroy our ecosystem and reduce a population that is already on the edge of extinction! Surely these majestic beasts deserve the same federal protections afforded to Southern Acornshell clams, the Coffin Cave mold beetle, the slender Campeloma snail, the vernal pool Fairy shrimp, or the Tooth Cave Pseudoscorpion.

     

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  14.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:52am

    Re: I am so glad...

    I agree. It's really quite depressing to find out what kind of inferior people -- clearly equipped with inferior minds -- are permitted to be involved in the educational system. These losers, halfwits, idiots, and morons should be picking up trash, not shaping the minds of the next generation.

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:00am

    Re:

    When placed under stress (asshole with a gun yelling at me trying to find out when I'm gonna shoot up the school) a CHILD might act out because you refuse to accept the situation isn't want you want it to be.

    Further, a lot of children with special needs get upset and angry when their routine is disturbed, especially if they have no warning.

     

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  16.  
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    Uriel-238 (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:03am

    Isn't this the very definition...

    ...of a thoughtcrime?

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:06am

    I'm surprised a MRAP tank wasn't driven through the front doors of the high school. You can't be too careful when dealing with a dinosaur killer.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:07am

    Re: Guilty as charged

    translation: 16 year old shows contempt of cop and idiotic school officials...

    the true crime though is thought crime: thinking you cat fantasize freely while being a child.

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:07am

    A meteor didn't cause the extinction of the dinosaurs, kids with guns did.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:07am

    Re: Re: Guilty as charged

    s/cat/can/

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:16am

    A Summerville Police Department report states that Stone continued to be disruptive and was placed in handcuffs, and was told that he was being detained for disturbing schools.


    Methinks sending in officers to search a boy's possessions and person for possible weapons and pulling him out of class to interrogate him, then arresting him and suspending him based on nothing more than a writing assignment involving a gun and an extinct animal is just a wee bit more disruptive than being angry at being falsely accused of threatening to shoot up a school based on absolutely no credible evidence.

    So of course, the teacher who pulled the magic three-letter-word out of context, the school officials who called in the cops, and the cops who ordered and executed the search were all arrested on similar charges, right...? RIGHT?!?! /sarc

     

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  22.  
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    Pragmatic, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:18am

    Re: Isn't this the very definition...

    I'd have thought so.

     

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  23.  
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    AnonCow, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:29am

    I'm waiting for PETA's response to this...

     

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  24.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:31am

    Re:

    Since when did a teenager need to be special needs to disrespect authority? They're at an age where they're pushing boundaries, and one becoming irate with authority would not be all that unusual. Especially when the authorities in question were doing something the teenager thought was incredibly stupid.

     

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  25.  
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    Juha Remes, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:33am

    Back in my day...

    ...this used to be called modern art. I have seen multiple videos (by adults) which are more disturbing than "killing" a pet dinosaur (which is not even alive) with a handgun.

     

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  26.  
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    Gumnos (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:44am

    Well, duh...

    It's the police that are armed with military equipment. Obviously we need to arm the schools with military-grade equipment as well.

     

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  27.  
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    Androgynous Cowherd, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:45am

    What's next?

    What's next, arresting Steven Moffat for arson? Peter Capaldi sought as a material witness?

    And is it my imagination or did this Jessica Lewis intentionally misrepresent to her higher-ups what had actually happened? What could possibly have been her motive?

    Lastly, isn't holding and interrogating a minor without notifying the parents/guardians a violation of the minor's Sixth Amendment right to counsel?

     

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  28.  
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    John Fenderson (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:48am

    Re: What's next?

    "And is it my imagination or did this Jessica Lewis intentionally misrepresent to her higher-ups what had actually happened?"

    That's how it looks to me. There's plenty of blame that should be placed on the cop and the school, but with the information at hand, it looks like what the teacher did deserves the most criticism.

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:50am

    Look, obviously this kid is dangerous. He killed a freakin' DINOSAUR, fer crissake! There's no telling what he might kill next. What if he killed a unicorn, gnome or leprechaun? I think we can all breathe a sigh of relief now that he's behind bars where he belongs!

     

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  30.  
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    Digger, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:53am

    Time to shutdown that school and P.D.

    They are all idiotically incompetent, an must summarily be discharged from any further attempts at harming the children's futures.
    All school officials involved as well as the police department officials, hell add in the local school board, should all be imprisoned for false arrest, making false police reports, and all around ass-hattery.

     

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  31.  
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    Manabi (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 11:58am

    Re: Re: What's next?

    And if she legitimately misunderstood it, how the hell did someone with such poor reading comprehension ever get through college, much less manage to become a teacher?

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 12:04pm

    Re: Guilty as charged

    How dare he get upset the police wanted to talk to him without him having the legal right of having a guardian present. how dare he get upset when the police break their own laws.

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 12:06pm

    He broke his schooled conditioning about how guns are evil and now he must be made an example of so no student will ever question authority again and write about things that are verboten in the eyes of those in charge of molding young and malleable minds.

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 12:08pm

    Re: Isn't this the very definition...

    thinking about guns is forbidden. They are evil inanimate objects that kill people, but are good only when handled by the police apparently.

     

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  35.  
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    Vincent Clement (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 12:09pm

    Re: Re: Guilty as charged

    After two minor incidents that ended up with my son receiving one-day suspensions, I've told my 15-year old, who has learning disabilities and OCD, to not answer any questions without a parent present.

    It's just too easy for administration to manipulate him and get him to say something that will result in a suspension.

     

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  36.  
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    MikeC (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 12:12pm

    Tough little sucker that killed a dino -- cops should be afraid

    All I know is if the kid was tough enough to kill a dinosaur with just a gun bought locally by someone who couldn't buy a gun (we talking nerf guns here??) .... then the cops probably should be afraid. You know he was able to find and kill an extinct animal with a gun he couldn't buy ... that is what I call a DANGEROUS young man!

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 12:18pm

    Worst First Thinking

    Sc=oitt Greenfield had an interesting related post over the weekend.

    http://blog.simplejustice.us/2014/08/23/the-zebra-of-worst-first-thinking/

    I think this describes a trend, one that will eventual carry us all to the bottom, if we do not find a way to mitigate this paranoiac thinking.

     

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  38.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 12:21pm

    What, no drone strike?

     

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  39.  
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    Quiet Lurcker, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 12:25pm

    Re: Re: Re: What's next?

    There is another, less disturbing, but far more insidious possibility here.

    It's just possible the teacher couldn't be bothered to read the entire thing; saw 'G-U-N', once or twice, and decided to turn it over without thinking to add needed context. Then, just to add insult to injury, after having notified staff, she went back over the paper, and discovered that she was wrong. But by then it was too late to retract her warning, and things went down hill from there.

     

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  40.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 12:49pm

    Learning disability? Everyone needs to cut the authorities some slack then. Wait, it's the student that had the learning disability?

     

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  41.  
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    JEDIDIAH, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 12:57pm

    Re: Guilty as charged

    We have done similar. We have seen similar abuses perpetrated by the local school district within our circle of friends.

     

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  42.  
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    Uriel-238 (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 1:08pm

    Re: What's next?

    What's next

    Challenging A Sound of Thunder, of course.

     

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    Seegras (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 1:09pm

    The creationists from the school board were probably very distressed about somebody shooting evidence for intelligent design. The police meanwhile didn't know what the word "cretinism" meant and denied any involvement with intelligence, designed or not.

     

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  44.  
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    Uriel-238 (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 1:11pm

    Re: Re: What's next?

    So the teacher SWATted the young man?

     

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  45.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 1:18pm

    Re: I am so glad...

    I also hear that in some rural schools it was not uncommon for the students to bring their unloaded shotguns to school.

    Cleaning them up in shop class before the hunting season was an annual event.

     

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  46.  
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    ThoughtCrimes, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 1:31pm

    Parody SONG (as in art) when I was in elementry school

    Sung to the music of popular CHRISTmas music:

    Deck the halls with gasoline
    fla la la la la, la la la la
    Strike a match an watch it glean
    fla la la la la, la la la la

    Watch the school burn down to ashes
    fla la la, la la la, la la la
    Arnt' you glad we play with matches
    fla la la la la, la, la, la, la

    Joy to the world, the school burnt down
    and all, the teachers, died

    We're looking for the principal
    he's hanging from the flag pole

    With a noose around his neck
    With a noose around his neck
    With a noo-oose, a noose, around, his, neck

    Hold on a minute, someone banging on my door something about a terrorist threat and religion in school.

    $#l7$&*#g
    Carrier lost

     

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  47.  
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    Uriel-238 (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 1:37pm

    Re: Re: I am so glad...

    That actually makes perfect sense to me.

    I'm curious if a kid bringing a circular saw to school for use in shop (or for a drama-department set-building project) would cause the same kind of panic.

    Because, you know, children are always only one step away from turning into savage rampage killers.

     

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  48.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 2:33pm

    Reverse Zero Tolerance

    I just want to know when we will have some reverse Zero Tolerance: Zero Tolearance for civil rights violations, abuse of office, and corruption.

     

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  49.  
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    Atkray (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 3:58pm

    Re:

    I hope it was Barney.

    Does that make me a bad person?

     

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  50.  
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    Tom, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 4:30pm

    No Leaders

    I could be wrong, but this looks like a situation of where everyone is a manager, but no one is a leader. Everyone is "following policies" that someone else put into place and no one is either enabled, allowed, or empowered to be the grown-up in the room and make a decision. Decisions have all been conceded to lawyers and the courts. The teacher will be commended for managing her student's safety. The administrator for managing the teacher's concern. The officer for managing the situation and so on.
    Zero Tolerance isn't a recipe for corruption or abuse as much as it is a recipe for substituting thoughtful analysis and prudent judgement with thoughtless incompetence and zealous policy enforcement for legal reasons. Once the teacher read the word "gun" it was all over for this 16 year old. Who needs context when policy can be mindless followed, especially if you could be sued if you don't? Who wants to take that chance?

    The costs of being a leader is too high.

     

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  51.  
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    Kronomex, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 4:33pm

    Complete and utter insanity on behalf of the teachers, school and police. Atkray; I'm also hoping that it was Barney.

     

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  52.  
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    Whatever (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 7:06pm

    Re: No Leaders

    The costs of being a leader are certainly too high. You are top of the totem pole to get sued and found personal liable if something bad happens. If you missed a sign, failed to direct someone perfectly, if you didn't somehow detect that little sign that clearly you should have seen, you end up on the hook for it.

    The solution to solve those issues? Write broad rules, and apply them without mercy. Mercy is the first step to a lawsuit. It's better to argue a "them's the rules" standpoint than a "sorry you child was killed / maimed / hurt by the student we didn't control".

    The US has serious issues with lawsuits, and it's diminishing anyone's interest in being a leader or trying to apply context to rules. Don't blame the schools, blame the legal system that got them there.

     

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  53.  
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    JP Jones (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 7:58pm

    Re: Re: No Leaders

    "The US has serious issues with lawsuits, and it's diminishing anyone's interest in being a leader or trying to apply context to rules. Don't blame the schools, blame the legal system that got them there."

    *Gasp* I, well, completely agree. Hold on, I need to reflect on the fact that this is the first thing I've seen you write that I've agreed with. I even had to check your profile to make sure it was the same person.

    There's a simple solution to this; the same thing we do in the military. If a student does something that you believe is bad behavior, write it down in their student record and talk to them about it (assuming it's minor). If more things happen, and that record starts getting full of infractions, then consider more severe action.

    Also, the parents MUST be involved in every step...it is unacceptable for a school to decide this stuff on their own (I would immediately disenroll my child from any school that showed illegal behavior...that is not something I want my daughter to be exposed to).

    The "lawsuit mentality" is destroying people for stupid, illogical reasons.

     

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  54.  
    icon
    Greevar (profile), Aug 25th, 2014 @ 9:10pm

    How things have changed...

    When I was in the fifth grade (I was 11), we were assigned to write about what we would do if we found ourselves in the same situation as in the movie "Home Alone". I wrote about blowing up my school so nobody would have to go to class anymore. What did I get for that? I got a conference with my parents and teacher because they were concerned about my state of mind. No cops, no punishment, no criminal accusations, and I never blew up the school either (shocking!).

    I explained that I was just trying to think of the most outrageous thing I could imagine. It was fiction, so I thought I'd just run with it. What's the harm? It was set during winter break. Nobody would be there, I figured, so nobody would get hurt.

    Today, that would have gotten me locked up in solitary and interrogated as a terrorist just waiting for his chance to shine. I'd probably be in juvenile prison until I was old enough to be sent to Git-Mo.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  55.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2014 @ 10:11pm

    Re:

    All policies result in zero intelligence. That's what policies are all about. Policies take the place of discretion.

    Also, please note that there is precious little difference between "police" and "policies".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  56.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 26th, 2014 @ 2:52am

    Re: Re:

    In all fairness, it isn't just the teenager that thinks that it was incredibly stupid...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  57.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 26th, 2014 @ 2:53am

    Re: Re:

    Or "politics" for that matter

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  58.  
    icon
    leehb9 (profile), Aug 26th, 2014 @ 4:38am

    Re: Guilty as charged

    Jessica Lewis deserves to be beaten very harshly, then fed to a very hungry dinosaur. This moron is actually teaching students in a school????

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  59.  
    identicon
    me, Aug 26th, 2014 @ 4:59am

    Re: Guilty as charged

    Yep, except this is completely assinine, the Cops should have the option of common sense, but obviously that's not the case. The parents, in particular for not being properly informed should sue all relevant parties.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  60.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 26th, 2014 @ 6:10am

    Dinosaurs are endangered, the kid got off easy!

    Doesn't the kid realize that dinosaurs are endangered? He got off lucky in my book. Soon there will be no more dinosaurs and incidents like this is why.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  61.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 26th, 2014 @ 6:57am

    Re:

    I hope it was Barney.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  62.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 26th, 2014 @ 7:05am

    Re: Isn't this the very definition...

    Why is it illegal to write about buying a gun in America? Don't we have both freedom of speech and the right to bear arms?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  63.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Aug 26th, 2014 @ 8:14am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: What's next?

    It's possible, I suppose. But -- and maybe this is just me -- if I were in the teacher's shoes and came across a paper that legitimately concerned me on casual glance, I would absolutely read it with great care and attention before I sounded any alarm bells. I would probably also run it by another teacher or a counselor first.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  64.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Aug 26th, 2014 @ 8:15am

    Re: No Leaders

    "Zero Tolerance isn't a recipe for corruption or abuse as much as it is a recipe for substituting thoughtful analysis and prudent judgement with thoughtless incompetence and zealous policy enforcement for legal reasons."

    Also known as "corruption and abuse".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  65.  
    identicon
    kashmira, Aug 26th, 2014 @ 8:38am

    Re: verry funny news

    Alex Stone ...he just wrote the assignment..he really didnt meant to do it,and ofcourse its not possible to kill dinosaurs now,and that too a pet...its really funny,to arrest him..

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  66.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 26th, 2014 @ 11:30am

    Re:

    ... the officials "make one mistake" that "leaves people killed".


    [pedantic]
    Almost got it there.

    "leaves people killed"
    is suitable passive voice

    officials "make one mistake"
    horribly active, blaming those perfect administrators and police officers. -- Try this:

    "mistakes were made"
    make no mention of who might have made them.
    you now have adequate passive voice.
    [/pedantic]

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  67.  
    icon
    JP (profile), Aug 26th, 2014 @ 11:43am

    Re:

    Hmmm. Am I the only one the all of sudden heard Was Not Was playing in the background?

    "(kick) OPEN THE DOOR, GET ON THE FLOOR, SOMEBODY SHOT THE DINOSAUR!"

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  68.  
    identicon
    robert spano, Aug 26th, 2014 @ 3:00pm

    where is the NRA when you need them...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  69.  
    icon
    John85851 (profile), Aug 26th, 2014 @ 3:50pm

    The teacher should be held responsible also

    I think we need to start looking at the root cause. In this case (and in a similar case where a kid brought a "dangerous item" into school for show and tell), the kids were acting under direction from the teachers to finish an assignment.

    So if a student is told to be creative and writes a story, and if the teacher who assigned the story turns him in for being "dangerous", then the teacher needs to be held responsible: either tell kids not to write any stories about using guns or better yet, don't take a sentence out of context for a paper that you yourself assigned!!

    And what will happen to the teacher in this case? Will she get in trouble for encouraging kids to write about guns (even if it's used to kill a dinosaur)? Or will she be called a hero for stopping a dangerous student?
    Either way, she did a good job as a teacher: she taught kids that creative writing assignments will be treated like death threats and they'll get arrested by the police for said assignments.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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