difficult child arrested

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by klmno, Apr 1, 2008.

  1. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    AGAIN! Apparently he vandalised the computer issued to him at school. I knew it had torn up and he had turned it in to get repaired. It turns out that he had intentionally done it- so they suspended him for 5 days, then tell me that they got police involved. Do they have every kid arrested who vandalizes their school-issued computer, or was this because I had been making issue that IEP wasn't being implemented and they know difficult child is on a suspended sentence for detention and has another charge on him that he hasn't gone to court for yet?

    Well, here I am off again to find out if he is going to be held or released to my custody.
  2. happymomof2

    happymomof2 New Member

    ((((Klmno)))) not sure if they always call the police for that. So sorry your going through all this. I have felt over the years since my son has been in Special Education that he is singled out and the punishment more severe.

    Maybe I am just sensitive because of his issues I don't know.

    Keep us posted.
  3. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Arrested??? That certainly seems very extreme. In Ohio they can't even put a juvenile in a holding cell unless it's a serious crime and the lowest charge for arresting is domestic violence. Do you have a diversion program in your community? This certainly sounds punitive to me. I can see them making him pay or work off the damages but arrest?

  4. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Sending understanding hugs your way. My personal answer to your rhetorical questions is "No, they don't arrest kids." May I add, UNLESS
    the school pushes them to do it. My ADHD & AS difficult child got in trouble at
    the school in 7th grade. There is an on campus "Officer Friendly" :sheepish: at each of the schools and the Officer did not want to press charges. The school tried for expulsion and thanks to the CD Board I quickly learned what a Manifestation Hearing was before attending and he was not expelled but was given a suspension (which was appropriate). A few days later a form letter came in the mail saying I needed to take him to the Department of Juvenile Justice center for a meeting. :confused: We went to the meeting and the Department of Juvenile Justice
    evaluator said after ten minutes "I don't think we need to continue with this meeting. I am glad he is getting help and I know he understands that his choice was a poor one."

    A week later we got a summons to Court and he was put on Probation for a year!! I absolutely know that could only have happened if the school forced the issue. I sympathize.

    by the way, that difficult child of mine takes things apart without intending to break them because he wants to see "how they run". Maybe your difficult child has the same issue and therefore his choice was a manifestation of his disorder
    and covered by his IEP??? Good luck. DDD
  5. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I do not think it is reasonable for them to arrest him either. Perhaps if it was the 2nd offense for such a thing. Maybe they just do not issue him a computer any longer. Arresting? No. Seems excessive to me.

    Good luck - keep us updated.
  6. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Well, here's the scoop. difficult child was released to me because the policeman didn't want him put in detention over this. However, he won't have any say in that later due to the suspended sentence difficult child is already on and given the fact that the PO is, UHMMM- I'll skip that one.

    Apparently, the night difficult child spent the evening with a friend- the same friend that he went into the shed with the following week- the friend took difficult child's computer apart and difficult child decided to destroy parts inside of it then. Notice how difficult child didn't stop this and neither damaged the friend's computer. Anyway, difficult child has been having medication changes due to signs of mania and this really fits along with his pattern. He's never had ppolice even called on him other than the manic periods, much less arrested. Try getting school district, PO, and others to see that though. I try to be objective and hope I am at least somewhat, but all I can see is that last year the absurd, dangerous, illegal behavior was for a much shorter period than the year before and this year it is not as extreme and that period lasted approximately 1 week this year- although there are still other signs at home (raging, lack of sleep, etc.) Specifically, in 2006, difficult child was flailing knives around and biking down a busy 4 lane road in the dark after pushing me out of the way and bolting out of the house- many times over a 3 mo period. Last year, he went into what appeared to be an abandoned house, took matches, went outside and lit matches, dropping them at his feet, thinking he was stomping them out but it started a brush fire-this was all in a 2 hour period after several weeks of being disruptive at school. Last summer, difficult child was switched to mood stabilizers and we've been trying to get them right. This year, he and the friend did this to the computer and a week later went biking in pouring rain and went into an abandoned detached shed. To me, this is a drastic improvement- so much so that if the other signs of mania weren't there, I would think it was just stupid decision-making. But, even though I see it as a vast improvement, he didn't become perfect and with the suspended sentence, this could land him in detention for a long time.

    Of course, I understand the suspension from school but yes, I do think this is a result of his disability. Particularly since I was telling people at school during that period that the way they were handling things was going to trigger difficult child, in my opinion. They did not change. Yesterday evening I emailed school and director of sp ed poitning out that iep was still not being implemented and asking if school district admin was going to do anything about it. This am difficult child was arrested- I don't think the friend was- I think the friend got the suspension only.

    Can you have the manifestation determination if the suspended time hasn't reached 10 days yet? Do in school suspensions count toward the 10 days?
  7. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    And, last year difficult child had 18 violations of conduct by March. This year, he had 4 before today.
  8. LoneStar14

    LoneStar14 New Member

    Not sure what district your son goes to, but I ran across this regarding the Fairfax County school district.
  9. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Sending many hugs, & much wisdom your way.

    Sorry I do not have more to offer, but you will be in my thoughts.
  10. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    We've had a Manifestation Hearing and if I remember right, I don't think it has to do with the 10 day suspension rule. I believe that it happens if there is talk of expulsion which could be applied for even without the 10 day bit. I could be wrong on that but I'm fairly certain.
  11. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Of course, if they know he'll be sent to detention, it kind of solves their problem of getting him out even though he's on an IEP, right?

    I just found out- the friend got 2 days suspension- no arrest. difficult child is VERY upset. I'm not happy- it's another $580 I have to pay for the computer repairs. I told difficult child if all friend did was remove a couple of components, but difficult child was the one to destroy them, then it should be expected that difficult child would get in more trouble. difficult child says the friend did a lot more than that. I hevan't heard what though, so I'm not sure. I do know that difficult child has been honest about shed incident details (checked that out) and he turned a kid in at school for selling alcohol and has been honest with me about other things this school year, so I'm not sure what to make of this one.

    The friend's mom just told me that he got 2 days suspension and told her he had done "something" to a friend's computer, then told her it was difficult child. When I told her that difficult child got 5 days suspension and arrested, she just said "oh, sorry".
  12. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Gentle hugs-I'm sorry you are dealing with this.
  13. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Am I in denial and being too biased by thinking this punishment (the arrest) was a result of my contact to higher ups to get iep implemented?
  14. wakeupcall

    wakeupcall Well-Known Member

    Welllll, my difficult child hasn't gone to extremes like this, yet. BUT my experiences with the schools is that they will do most anything. (Yikes.....I've gone to higher-ups, too!) They think they are gods and it's gonna be their way, or else. It's a fight every single day. Good luck...
  15. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    about the manifest destiny and suspension, I believe it has to be out of school suspension. Good luck, and I hope it gets better soon
  16. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    You have my deepest sympathy.

    Dude is looking at 15 years for a crime he didn't even do.

    Hugs -
  17. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    OMG, Star- can this be fought or at least appealed? How is Dude holding up?
  18. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    KLMO.............sad to say...........but it is probably because you raised Hades to the higher ups...........and now they know your boys name, and pegged him with a MO. I have posted many times about how our kids get a stigma, and it is hard to ever erase. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr:mad: Makes me madder than almost any one thing on this planet. Talk about prejudice!!!!
  19. dreamer

    dreamer New Member

    Admittedly, I did not read the replies here....am trying to catch up what I missed while gone to SHriners with my son....
    AND.....I am NOT unbiased, I am NOT real objective....my personal experiences have made me ..paranoid.
    I would not discount this as a form of trying to get your son out of the school system......(see my posts at Special Education forum) I think there IS a possibilty your sons school saw a small door for them to get your son out of their hair, off their desk with this incident. They had an opportunity to pass the buck (our son) and are taking advantage of it.

    I was VERY glad our middle school did NOT get their laptops for the students until AFTER I had pulled my son out to homeschool him. Why? Becuz I very much feared the responsibility involved with an expensive peice of electronics. Even if it had been damaged innocently (like by being dropped or stolen or something) I feared our school would twist the inciedent, put a spin on it and it would become a serious problem for us, one that with us being on soc sec disability, would wind up costing us far more than we could ever afford. Maybe they should offer your son some type of shop class or something so he CAN take things apart and try to put them back together in a CONSTRUCTIVE manner.....rather than punishing him so extremely for being destructive? Maybe they should give the kids more TIME doing PHYSICAL things like running on a playground so kids can get rid of some of this energy etc? I dunno.

    Mostly I just really wanted to offer hugs. I am sorry you have to deal with this. I wonder what anyone in position of authroty thinks their method of dealing with this incident will accomplish?
  20. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Here's a little twist that I just learned-

    Yesterday I asked asst. principal for a little more detail about what happened with the computer- like how much was the other boy involved (after all, I was hit with the entire bill), and if the boys' stories matched. He said to contacat the arresting officer (school's resource officer) because it is a criminal matter now.

    So, today I went there to pay the cost and pick up difficult child's schoolwork for time on suspension. Asst. principal comes in and I asked if I could at least get an itemized list of damages so I'll lnow what I'm paying for (I asked nicely). He returns and leads me to conference room. He showed me photos and difficult child's statement, which matched the story I had heard and other kid's involvement. So, then I asked why difficult child was arrested and other kid not. Asst. principal says he can't give me that detail but will get officer on phone (who had not returned my call) and he can discuss it. Then, before calling officer, asst. princ. talks about difficult child doing much better this year and always being honest about things. So, I say well, everything will change now- he says "why", and I say surely he knows about the suspended sentence and that this will cause detention. He acts like he doesn't know, but I'm sure he does. He says well, in court details will come out and maybe... I say "really, I have been in court with difficult child several times now. There is no real testimony and questioning. What people present to the police, the police charge the hisghest and most they can, then judge just asked difficult child, or his attny, if difficult child did this offense and it is either I did it or didn't (he's always said he did) and there is no explanation of circumstances or anything else. It is guilty, then sentencing. And, detention for kids this age does not turn them around the way we naive parents think it should- the only learning experience they get is how to be serious criminals." He says he is sorry, but did look like this might have been a little more than he expected.

    So, he gets officer on phone and officer says difficult child's story gave him probable cause to believe vandalism and that is all he needed to charge him and I could explain other details (like the parts that were accidental- the stories were consistent on that). He says he's looking into if he can charge the other boy. I tried to discourage that a little by saying that I didn't think the other had done more than mine, but, where is that line drawn. So far I guess they think the other boy only took computer apart and put it back together, so it wasn't vandalism and costs no money to repair. (Never mind that the other boy is the one that took both computers apart and didn't have time to put difficult child's back together when his mom started in the house, so difficult child flips and tries to jam pieces back together then hits a chip with a screwdriver trying to make it fit back before the mom walked in the room- so it is all difficult child's fault). Then officer says difficult child finally admitted that he got frustrated and started hitting the computer with screwdriver. Well, either difficult child was raging on this computer or officer is trying to exagerate the incident and difficult child's words to justify the charge. Then officer became a little defensive and said it didn't matter, difficult child caused this damage and he found probable cause and I could just eplain it all to the judge. I came home and asked difficult child what words he used to officer and if he told him the one part being damaged was an accident. He said he did tell them about the accidental portion, but told him the other part was because he poked a screwdriver in there.

    I don't know- I guess school could have prepped officer that I wanted to question all this. Several months ago, difficult child was written up at school for vandalism for taking keys off computer and putting them back on- it still worked and cost no money. They say other kid was written up at school for tampering with computer, not vandalism, and that is why he got 2 days instead of 5 days detention and arrest. I'm not trying to get other kid arrested- I don't think mine should have been- not for this. And, I know if it had been mine that started it and other kid had been the one to take things farther, mine would not have gotten a lesser punishment and would have still been arrested for being their, contributing, and not reporting.