Stage Prop Or Gun? Student's Suspension Prompts Protest

Stage Prop Or Gun? Student's Suspension Prompts Protest

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A video shows a state trooper called to Hammond High School Monday for a silent student protest. On Tuesday, students wore #letsammyjoego T-shirts. It all started with a non-functional air gun found on a stage.

“She told us to bring in props. So I brought in a prop and I got repercussions for that,” said Samuel Webster, a senior.

Samuel said the teacher directing a play gave him permission to bring the non-working air gun in. That didn't go over well with the school. So far the repercussions are a 5-day suspension. He's also missing hockey, where he co-captains the team. He fears expulsion.

“The teacher asked him to bring it in as a prop. They didn't want to hear that. Their concern was he brought a weapon to school. And that is it. They didn't care about the story behind why,” said Samuel's father, Michael Baillargeon.

School officials did not respond when asked by 7 News about the situation. In a letter to Samuel's mother, they point out he brought in both the BB pistol and the BBs it fires. 

A school board meeting will be held in the school library at 7 p.m. on Tuesday. A crowd is expected to come show its support for Samuel, as well as discuss other issues in the district.

Samuel hopes to go to college. He knows just the suspension is a black eye. Expulsion would be worse.

“I could have made some better decisions on my behalf, but I feel like they have blown it out of proportion,” he said.

Samuel and his parents were invited to a hearing before the school's superintendent Tuesday. They say it did nothing to allay their fears.

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