Earlier this week, it was reported that school officials confiscated the $2 bill an eighth grade student in Houston had tried to pay for lunch at school with thinking it was counterfeit. What followed was a full city-wide investigation by the Fort Bend Independent School District Police Department. During that quest for justice the child was informed by a school cop at Christa McAuliffe Middle School that she “could be in big trouble.
After threatening her with potential counterfeiting charges, which carry up to ten years in prison as a penalty, and wasting lots of time and brain cells on this ridiculous investigation, the cops involved didn’t even so much as offer an apology to Danesiah Neal or her grandmother, Sharon Kay Joseph, who had given her the perfectly legal lunch money.
Via the Washington Times:
A Houston eighth-grader was reportedly investigated for forgery after she tried to use a $2 bill to pay for lunch at school.
Danesiah Neal, a student at Fort Bend Independent School District’s Christa McAuliffe Middle School, said she was trying to buy some chicken nuggets with the $2 bill her grandmother gave her, but school officials confiscated the bill and said it was fake, a local ABC News affiliate reported.
“I went to the lunch line, and they said my $2 bill was fake,” Danesiah told the news station. “They gave it to the police. Then they sent me to the police office. A police officer said I could be in big trouble.”
School officials called Daneisha’s grandmother, Sharon Kay Joseph, and asked, ” ‘Did you give Danesiah a $2 bill for lunch?’ He told me it was fake,” the grandmother recalled.
An investigation into the $2 bill led Fort Bend ISD police to a local convenience store that gave it to Ms. Joseph, ABC reported.
Police were then led to a bank where the 1953-issued bill was examined and determined to be real.
“He brought me my $2 bill back,” Ms. Joseph told ABC. “He didn’t apologize. He should have, and the school should have because they pulled Danesiah out of lunch, and she didn’t eat lunch that day because they took her money.”
No charges were filed.
“It was very outrageous for them to do it,” Ms. Joseph said. “There was no need for police involvement. They’re charging kids like they’re adults now.”
ABC examined all police reports from three Houston-area school districts since the 2013-14 school year and found a total of 40 similar cases in which students faced felony investigations for alleged lunch line forgeries, EAG News reported.
A felony forgery charge carries up to a 10-year prison sentence and remains on a student’s criminal record for life, ABC said.
“No charges were filed.”