Before I go on, a bit of background about my high school.
Most people who attend it are some combination of crazy and rich, some leaning a little more towards the crazy side, some leaning a little more towards the rich side, and a large chunk that carries strong strains of both.
It’s also a VERY liberal high school, whose longtime claim to fame is that it was the first in DC to integrate. We called all our teachers by their first names, that’s what a bunch of hippies we were.
Here, from TSG, is the gist of what happened:
According to a January 6 search warrant application filed in U.S. District Court, a copy of which you can find below, principal Kevin Barr called in the feds after a teacher’s e-mail account was “compromised and used to send e-mails to three students.” The messages, all sent on November 26, came from the GDS account of teacher Alison Taylor Fastov without her “knowledge and authorization.” One of the messages, sent to a male student, was obscene, while the other two criticized the recipients (rather convincingly) for poor classroom performances.
Reading the whole affadavit can only be described as amusingly appalling.
First of all, the teacher whose email account was broken into was my 9th or 10th grade English teacher (I can’t remember which), and the French teacher referenced in one of the “criticizing” emails was my French teacher my freshman year.
The 2nd “criticizing” email is probably the closest to actually sounding like her, though I probably would have freaked out if I got the first “criticizing” email. The “obscene” email is so obviously not her it’s kind of hilarious.
Now, the “obscene” email would probably have been obviously recognized as a prank, though clearly a stupid one that likely would have gotten the prankster suspended, if not expelled (especially for the use of the n-word, which was pretty much an automatic suspension when I went there).
And breaking into the teacher’s email, again, probably should have gotten the kid suspended or expelled, even without the jerkass obscene email.
Where it verges into a comedy of absurdity is when Kevin (who was an English teacher in my day, and is now the principal) called the FBI in on this, who eventually got the Secret Service involved.
He literally made a Federal case out of it. Half the kids at the school are probably smart and tech-savvy enough to have helped him backtrace the email and find the culprit (though whether any of them would have put down their bongs long enough to help is another matter).
And that’s where I have a problem with this. I don’t disagree that the kid should have been at the very least suspended and more likely expelled, but calling in the Feds did 2 things:
1. Put this case on the radar of people like TSG, from where it can only look even more absurd than it already is.
2. Made the idiot kid a lot more likely to cry foul and bitch and whine about the punishment not fitting the crime, and probably get out of this without any serious marks on his record (although since TSG picked it up, with some seriously bad publicity).
Anyway, the whole thing is just a fiasco, and I’m ever so glad to see my tax dollars going to help my alma mater hunt down a jerkass kid.