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Cedric
Cedric, Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  Lawyer with several years of litigation experience in civil and criminal law.
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My 17 year old son was suspended from school today for 5 days

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My 17 year old son was suspended from school today for 5 days when a teacher suspected him of being Under The Influence he was sent to the Principals office,the School Resource Officer was brought in, he was given a sobriety test which he passed,the school nurse was brought in and she evaluated him and found him to be perfectly fine, I spoke with him on the phone from the office and he was perfectly fine,there was No smell of alcohol,or marijuana. My wife arrived to pick him up within 20 minutes and found him to be perfectly fine. The Principal suspected him of being Under The Influence of something and despite the findings of the school nurse,the SRO,and his mother still found him to be guilty of being Under The influence of something and without any justification suspended him for 5 days. Seems to me at the very least his Civil Rights were violated- He wasn't a threat to anyone,didn't damage any school property,wasn't belligerent or threatening to any faculty members-and yet the principal in a ten minute period Suspected,accused,found guilt and imposed a punishment....do we have any recourse?
Submitted: 4 years ago via Cornell Legal Info Institute.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Cedric replied 4 years ago.
Potentially, you can sue the school system for defamation and for violating his rights, but because school officials don't need to have probable cause (like police officers) to take disciplinary action against children, it's much less likely that you would prevail in a case against the school district.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Ok,but if a police officer puts you under arrest he cant just impose a sentence on you at that time,you as the arrestee have the right to legal council,and the right to have your case heard before a judge and jury.Does the principal have the right to expel,or impose a suspension on any student at any time for no reason without any recourse?
Expert:  Cedric replied 4 years ago.
No, the principal does not, but at the same time, the principal's authority to suspend a student is not subject to the same governmental checks and balances that are placed on police power--so you can file the complaint with the school district that your son was subject to unfair treatment, but he doesn't have the same rights to 'appeal' his suspension as he would if he were unjustly tried with criminal charges.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
so,at the very least I could file a complaint with the school district,file a multi million dollar law suit against the school district and have the principal publicly ridiculed on our local news stations and local news papers and maybe create enough of an uproar in our town among parents of all students and petition the school board to have the principals job terminated since he's using his power unjustifiably.
Expert:  Cedric replied 4 years ago.
Yes, I would recommend to file an administrative complaint and a civil lawsuit against the principal for his unlawful and unjustified actions against your son.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Great, would an attorney request a retainer for filing a law suit?
Expert:  Cedric replied 4 years ago.
Not necessarily. You can potentially find an attorney who will work on a contingency basis, meaning he would only get paid if you get a settlement or a verdict (then he would normally want 1/3 of that amount).
Cedric, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 2899
Experience: Lawyer with several years of litigation experience in civil and criminal law.
Cedric and 8 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Great,thanks very much for your time you've been very helpful...

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