A Georgia high school senior was charged with a felony after police found fishing knives in his car.
Cody Chitwood, 17, turned himself in and was released on a $1,000 bond. Fishing knives were found in his car after police performed a random sweep and drug-sniffing dogs detected black powder in Chitwood’s car. No drugs were found, only the fishing knives in a tackle box.
“It’s pretty ridiculous,” said Chitwood, who attends Lassier High School in Cobb County in a statement to the Marietta Daily Journal. “I have an attorney and I’m hoping to get the felony dropped so I can still get in the Air Force.”
If prosecuted, Chitwood could face two to 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
Recently, another student, Andrew Williams from nearby Allatoona High, received a felony charge after an assistant principal searched his car and found a knife. The school official conducted the car search after another student suggested that Williams had been smoking marijuana in his car. Like in Chitwood’s case, no drugs were found but knives were.
The students aren’t the only ones who are displeased with the zero-tolerance policy.
“The public expects the same good common sense they use every day of their lives to apply to the laws of our state, and we as legislators seek nothing less,” Republican state Rep. Ed Setzler said to the The Marietta Daily Journal. “We’ll inspect the current state of the law, but our school leaders don’t like it, our law enforcement doesn’t like it, and we’re finding out the citizens who understand the current state of the law certainly don’t like it.”
Speaking of zero-tolerance, two Virginia Beach seventh graders were suspended for playing with an airsoft toy gun on their own private property in August. They were eventually expelled for an entire school year in a unanimous vote made by a school district disciplinary committee.
Sources: The Daily Caller, Marietta Daily Journal