Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

Summary: A student has been expelled for one year after allegedly posting a hit list with 30 individuals.

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A Chisholm, Minnesota high school student has been expelled for one year after allegedly posting a hit list on Facebook. School district officials say the individual included the names of 30 students, teachers, and graduates on the list. The posting made no specific threat other than including the heading "Hit List."

A parent noticed the posting and notified the school several weeks ago by showing the posting to the school's Superintendent James Varichak on his cell phone during a girls' basketball game on March 3, 2011. Varichak said he immediately notified Chisholm police and the boy's parents. "We had to prove that it was a substantial disruption to the education process, and we believe it would be if he was to return (to school)," Varichak said according to the Duluth News Tribune.

As a result, the school board scheduled a special meeting and voted to expel the student. In response to the incident, the school will also hold a presentation about social networks and Internet use for all students and their parents.

The teenager is now enrolled in an alternative education program. The case has also been referred to the St. Louis County Attorney's Office, which is considering whether criminal charges are warranted.

Last month, I wrote a story about how a teenager tried and failed to hire a hitman via Facebook. He had a criminal history, so the consequences for him were much more severe.

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Emil Protalinski

About Emil Protalinski

Emil is a freelance journalist writing for CNET and ZDNet. Over the years,
he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, including Ars
Technica, Neowin, and TechSpot.

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20 comments
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  • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

    Serves him right. Dumbass.
    The one and only, Cylon Centurion
    • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

      @Cylon Centurion 0005
      OK to do what he did then? Just stupid for getting caught, eh?
      pjher
  • Waiting...

    for some deluded idiot to try to speak out for the kid's 'right to privacy and free speech'
    UrNotPayingAttention
    • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

      @chmod 777
      i'm waiting for the report that the parents of the kid hired an attorney to sue the school... 10:1 says it happens.
      bc3tech
    • You will wait forever.

      @chmod 777

      1st amendment doesn't cover threats, slander/libel, yelling fire in public places all of the above for the LULZ. Kid had it coming.
      osreinstall
      • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

        @osreinstall
        But that require use to understand what Hit List actually meant to him.
        It could mean anything, the person who show the list of and the school governing board chose the literal meaning of the word. It be interest to hear what the boy meaning was.
        Knowles2
      • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

        @Knowles2<br><br>Doesn't matter what it means to him. It matters what it means under the law. Or it could mean what it says. Facebook defaults to public so no one had to show the authorities or school board. But I bet someone showed them anyway. Who cares. It is wrong to threaten people. There is no privacy on Facebook. Nice to see another sociopath off to special Ed.
        osreinstall
  • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

    Yeah, the kid got what he deserved.
    nickswift498
  • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

    Seem a bit harsh to me.
    Knowles2
  • Dumbass

    I keep my Hit List in Google Docs. Nice and safe and where it belongs.
    pizzafrog
  • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

    So if I posted a list of people I want to "hit" with a compliment, I could be expelled? There may be more to the story - but it would seem the student was not given due process.
    RITdonna
  • Paranoia

    So the kid put his Hit List on Facebook. So what! Everyone goes to extremes these days making mountains out of mole hills. Everyone is so eager to punish for behaviors that would have received a shrug and a smirk a generation ago. <br><br>Of course, someone will tell me how different times are now, how much more uncertain and violent. I don't see retribution contributing to the better of society. No, in fact, it makes it worse. The schools are like prisons now, so why be surprised when students act like prisoners? Have two decades of zero tolerance made schools better or worse? How many kids are going to be expelled for simple adolescent venting? There wasn't even a threat implied.<br><br>Perhaps there are some who think the US would do well to expel every student and imprison every person until it is proven that their intentions are innocent.<br><br>Freedom of speech can be messy business, but it is only cowards who would do away with it on the illogical grounds that speech equals action. It's a sick society that wants to severely punish individuals for small infractions and for actions of political incorrectness and yet thinks it can still remain a free society by doing so.
    sissy sue
    • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

      @sissy sue
      Thanks, Sue. Totally agree with you
      dalbrittonar
  • Why can't we do this with adults too

    If a kid makes a comment like this it is TERRIBLE, if a politician does it, it is fund raising. Where do you think kids get their examples???
    mswift@...
  • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

    @sissy sue
    I bet if there was a mass shooting in a school you would be one of those screaming at how the authorities missed all the 'signs'. Get a grip. If this student wants to be so stupid and put such on facebook, he deserves even worse, just for being so stupid.
    strangefruit
  • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

    good to see that brains are still alive in Minnesota....I wonder what color the sky is in his world....like he did not think that a post like that would not get any attention. Schools HAVE to be vigilant, even if it seems extreme. You would be freaking out if this kids school turned into another Columbine and no one did anything about it.
    phoenix144
  • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

    Bit extreme

    Suggested CIA Hit List

    1. Gadaffi
    2. Robert Mugabe
    3. Burmese Military Junta
    4. North Korean Military Junta
    5. Chavez of Venuzuela

    Feel free to add to it.
    neilpost
  • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

    All this does is reinforce isolation of kids who feel trapped and yet are compelled to let their world know, albeit in a flawed fashion, that they are not well. A meeting with the child and parents would have been in order before such drastic measures were taken - perhaps that happened and we're not given that info here? If this was as swift as is portrayed here, then this just hammered this kid further into a dark place, and that doesn't solve anything, because as we all know, hit lists are incapable of compiling themselves at "alternative education programs".
    ejhonda
  • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

    I hate to take the kids side, but hit list could mean many things. Just like saying you are "targetting" another- targetting them for what? What would they be hit with?

    Actually, he will probably benefit from being expelled from a public school and put in an alternate education program.

    Holding a seminar/presentation on where the lines are drawn is a good starting point for the school. Calling the police and parents was a wise move. The school gets both positive and negative points in my book.
    Dave Keays
  • RE: Student expelled for posting hit list on Facebook

    The kid is dumb, but not a criminal.
    The school board--now in my opinion, those are the real criminals.
    Reminds me of the zero tolerance policy case where a small kid brings a plastic knife in his lunchbox and got expelled.
    ochabge