A Maryland kindergartner who wet himself with fear while being interrogated over a toy gun back in June has had a suspension reversed, with the incident being struck from the record after the child’s family hired a lawyer and fought school officials on the matter.
As we reported at the time, the five-year-old from Dowell Elementary School in Lusby, Maryland was questioned alone by school officials for over two hours after he showed a friend his cowboy-style cap gun on the way to school.
Officials finally called the boy’s mother in when he wet his pants. The school principal even stated that had the gun been “loaded” with caps, then it would have been “deemed an explosive and police would have been called in.”
The Washington Post reports that officials wrote to the boy’s family last week to inform them that the 10 day suspension will be reversed “in its entirety”.
The letter, sent to the family’s attorney, says school officials reviewed the record, “carefully considering both the needs of the student and those of the school system.”
The school had previously refused to remove the incident from the boy’s school record, stating that it should remain on the permanent record because other children had been traumatized by the incident.
After repeated efforts by the attorney Robin Ficker, the school finally relented and agreed to rescind the punishment and the mark on the boy’s record. The mother, who refused to back down on the case, stated “I’m just glad they finally decided to make right what they had done so wrong.”
“We need to talk about having common sense when it comes to talking about school safety. We need not to overreact on young children and terrorize them… “He was a normal, typical 5-year-old who had a toy.” the mother added.
Ficker, who was also the attorney involved in the infamous Hello Kitty bubble gun incident back in January, filed a detailed and lengthy report that alleged teachers bribed other students with a school currency called “Husky Bucks” to provide “statements” about the incident. The statements were then written by the principal, and were not sent to the boy’s family.
Ficker’s report also made note of the fact that both the boy and his sister were questioned in an “intimidating manner at length.” Ficker also made the point that five-year-old’s often do not have the understanding to grasp the gravity of student conduct codes.
“It is common for kindergartners to play Cowboys and Indians, Cops and Robbers or to bring things to Show and Tell,” the appeal said. “In any case, telling a little 5 year old something once or twice, is often not enough.”
The reversal of the suspension comes at the same time as the dismissal of criminal charges against 14-year-old Jared Marcum who refused to stop wearing a gun rights T-shirt to school in West Virginia.