Monday, October 29, 2007

Student suspended for having shotgun shells in her car!

Yet another wacky school district in our Nation. A High School student at Willow Canyon High School in Arizona named Kim Peters was suspended from school for having 2 cases of shotgun shells in her own vehicle while parked in a High School parking lot. The school administrators said that the shotgun shells could be classified as a "dangerous instrument"

http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/local/articles/1029shoot1029.html

If it were not for the students who have been suspended for drawing pictures of guns or for having 1 inch plastic GI Joe guns in their pockets due to the so-called "zero tolerance" policy our schools currently have than I would say I'm surprised. Unfortunately, many school officials have already proven that they are not bright enough to tell the difference between a drawing of a gun and a real gun, so I'm not surprised that the school administrators of Willow Canyon High School can't tell the difference between a shotgun shell & a shotgun.

Get real folks, a shotgun shell is not a "dangerous instrument" - if it were, boxes of them would not be sold on the bottom shelf of the local Walmart & local sporting goods stores where kids could easily reach them. The difference is, the people who run Walmart & sporting goods stores are smart enough to tie their own shoes. These school officials should not be hired for anything more complicated than being the greeter at a local Walmart Supercenter. Why in the world are we trusting them with the education of our children?

You'll find contact info for the Willow Canyon High School administrators on their website. Please send them a FRIENDLY email & kindly explain to them what the difference is between a shotgun shell and an actual firearm. Willow Canyon High School is part of the Dysart Unified School District. Here is the Dysart Unified School District Board Member contact info.

1st Update: The exact wording of the definition of a dangerous instrument which was what they used to unfairly punish her don't even apply to the events. Exact wording of the definition from their own Student & Parent Handbook is:

Dangerous Instruments/Explosive Devices means anything that under the circumstances in which it is used, attempted to be used, or threatened to be used, is readily capable of causing physical injury.
Even if you were to ignore the fact that shotgun shells without a gun are not capable of causing physical injury, she did not use, attempt to use, or threaten to use her shotgun shells in any way. They were sitting in an unopened box in her own personal vehicle, an extension of her own home space. Additionally there is not a single mention of the word ammunition or shotgun shells in the entire handbook because it is NOT banned.

The High School officials were 100% wrong on this & they need to admit their mistake as well as delete this gross injustice from Kim's record. If they refuse to do it, than Kim will need to appeal to the school board & they had better recognize the facts or face upset voters at the next board election. In addition to setting her record straight they need to render disciplinary action against those who signed off on this gross injustice. Perhaps suspension without pay or even better - termination - due to lack of education.

2nd Update:

I understand one of the board members is going to request an agenda item to discuss the misinterpretation of the dangerous instrument policy at the next Dysart Board Meeting on Nov 14th. If anyone would like to speak either during the initial "call to the audience" or during the specific agenda item, be sure to show up BEFORE the meeting begins to fill out a "request to speak" form - only those who are on the audience speaker list will be granted an opportunity to speak during the board meeting.

The meeting will begin @ 6PM & is located in the board room in the Nathaniel Dysart Education Center located at 15802 N. Parkview Place, Surprise, AZ 85374

3rd Update: Also check out this story of a boy who was told he could not wear an NRA shirt. The NRA sued on basis of 1st Amendment freedom of speech infringement & won.

12 comments:

Thane Eichenauer said...

On an apparently unrelated issue, there is apparently a recall effort present filed against Dysart Unified School District No. 89 board members Charles Otterman, Bridget Pauletich-Otterman and Christine Pritchard.

The recall site is: www.saveourdysart.com

Anonymous said...

I just sent the following email to the school principal & Dysart school district board members:

As you are aware, Kim Peters was suspended & now has a record for having a "dangerous instrument" in her car while parked on school grounds. How exactly is a shotgun shell a dangerous instrument? You can buy shotgun shells at the local Walmart & sporting goods stores where they are stored on the bottom shelf where children can easily reach them. Walmart realizes that ammunition is not a "dangerous instrument" or they would store it behind locked cases like they do with actual "dangerous instruments" such as handguns, rifles, and shotguns.

What was she going to do, hold the shell & try to hit it hard enough in exactly the right spot with something sharp & pointed? Name one school shooting that has taken place with only ammunition & no guns? Even if she were such a fool & were able to pull off such a stunt (although I've never heard of it actually happening) she would only be able to get off one shot as her hand would be blown off by such a foolish action.

If you had found a gun in her car than yes, she would have had a "dangerous instrument" but shotgun shells are far less dangerous than a baseball bat without a gun to shoot them from. Are you going to start suspending students who bring baseball bats to school to play baseball?

Kim Peters is a good person & does not deserve to have her student record marred by having a record stating that she was caught with a "dangerous instrument" - smart folks are going to assume that it was some sort of a weapon. They would assume no administrator would lump ammunition in with dangerous instruments so they will assume the worst.

Please help Kim Peters & remove this from her record as her parents have requested. Don't take my word alone - You can find other opinions on this very important issue at the following URL:

http://keepandbeararms.com/news/nl/read_comments.asp?nl=1153842569121&tmpD=10%2F30%2F2007

Thanks for your time & consideration

Sebastian said...

She's pretty smoking hot. Unfortunately, I'm a little past the age where I should be saying that about 17 year olds :)

Thane Eichenauer said...

In case you are curious as to whether you are in Dysart school district but aren't sure, it apparently takes in a small bit of Glendale, AZ and Wadell, AZ as well.

If we can trust the district to produce an accurate map:

www.dysart.org/schools/District_Map.pdf

Dustin said...

If any of you know Kim or her father please pass on to them that I received a reply to an email I had sent the Dysart District board members & was told that Kim does have the option to appeal this punishment to the board members. (right after the standard disclaimer that they are not allowed to discuss individual students, blah blah blah)

The suspension is obviously already over, but she can appeal to have it expunged from her record as it will be easily proven that no such policy against shotgun shells even exists.

The only way she would fail the appeal would be if the board members don't care about what is actually written in the district policy and prefer instead to uphold the poor judgment of the High School official that decided to make an example out of her for a policy that does not even exist yet (ban on shotgun shells).

Anonymous said...

Yes. How exactly did Kim use, attempt to use, or threaten to use her boxes of shotgun shells sitting in her own car, and even if she had made a threat, how exactly was she going to carry it out without a gun? The Dysart officials are not even following their own rulebook! See their own policy below:

The 'Dysart Student Parent Handbook' states: "Dangerous Instruments/Explosive Devices means anything that under the circumstances in which it is used, attempted to be used, or threatened to be used, is readily capable of causing physical injury."

Anonymous said...

This looks illegal if the school is public at first glance of the Arizona revised statutes.

ARS 3-3108:
"Firearms regulated by state; state preemption; violation; classification

A. Except as provided in subsection C of this section, a political subdivision of this state shall not enact any ordinance, rule or tax relating to the transportation, possession, carrying, sale, transfer or use of firearms or ammunition or any firearm or ammunition components in this state."

...and I can't find any Arizona law that would affect her legal possesion of ammunition as competitive shooter over 14.

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