Students suspended for mock lynching - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Students suspended for mock lynching

October 8, 2002

Valdosta - Three Barbie dolls painted black, hanging from a tree by nooses. This is the scene several Lowndes High Students found outside the school last Thursday.

"We're embarrassed that something like this has happened, but have taken measures to ensure that it does not happen again in the future," said Dr. Steve Smith, Lowndes School Superintendent.

Three white students connected to the incident have been suspended for five days. But concerned parents say that's not good enough.

"Five days suspension is not enough punishment for a hate crime like this," said Cynthia Turner, Concerned Parent. "They should have been expelled or something more serious."

But according to Lowndes School Superintendent Steve Smith, proper action was taken. "The code of conduct has been followed and we have done everything possible to punish the students and resolve the matter," said Smith.

LHS students are shocked and disturbed at such an event.

"I took it as a threat, so I'm just glad they've been punished and it wasn't overlooked," said Candice Close, LHS Student.

"It was a senseless act by a few students being immature and stupid," said Hannah Ary, LHS Student Body President.

But students say in no way is this a reflection of their school.

"We've never had anything like this happen here and I hope people don't think we all act this way," said Blake Bonner, LHS Student.

School officials say they haven't dropped the issue and additional punishment may be handed out in the future. But they assure Lowndes High will continue to be a safe learning environment for students and educators.

posted at 3:15PM by ashley.harper@walb.com