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Police Sent to 6th Grader's Home, Boy Suspended After Toy Nerf Gun Seen in Video


Warning that misguided school zero-tolerance policies can have disastrous ramifications for students' future academic prospects, The Rutherford Institute has come to the defense of a North Carolina student who was denied admission to a charter school based on an improper and unlawful suspension in his records arising from an incident two years earlier.

The incident arose in 2020 after the sixth-grader was suspended from school and reported to police for possessing a look-alike weapon and making a threat after he briefly displayed a toy gun during a virtual Zoom class as part of a Halloween game when instructed by his teacher to look "scary." Although school officials subsequently agreed to remove the unlawful suspension from the student's record, they shared details of the incident two years later with a charter school to which the child was admitted. In once again coming to the student's defense, Rutherford Institute attorneys warned that negligently distributing false information which causes harm to a student's standing and reputation could constitute defamation.