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A Minnesota high school student has filed a lawsuit against his school district and his hometown's police chief, claiming that his First Amendment rights were violated when he was suspended over a message he posted on Twitter.
Reid Sagehorn was suspended by the Elk River School District after he responded to an anonymous tweet claiming he had kissed a young gym teacher at Rogers High School. Thinking it was a joke, Sagehorn said he sarcastically replied, "Actually yes." A parent who saw the tweet reported the matter to authorities.
The case was investigated by local police for possible criminal defamation charges; however, the Hennepin County Attorney's Office declined to press charges due to insufficient evidence. Authorities also confirmed there was never an inappropriate relationship between the two.
While prosecutors dropped the case, the lawsuit says the school district suspended Sagehorn for five days for violating school policy against "threatening, intimidating or assault of a teacher, administrator or other staff member." The suit claims that the district extended the suspension to ten days and moved toward expelling Sagehorn, forcing him to enroll in a different high school just four months before graduation.
Now, the controversy has hit the courtroom.
"Students have a right to free speech," attorney Steven Aggergaard, who is not connected to the case, told Fox 9 News. "Even more outside the school site and grounds."
Sagehorn is seeking monetary damages and relief for legal expenses.
- See more at: http://bossip.com/982461/teen-sues-his-high-school-for-first-amendment-rights-violation-after-being-suspended-over-a-tweet/#sthash.sDJFTlSn.dpuf