A 15-year-old high school student in Ansonia is under federal investigation for comments he made during class.
In a statement to News 8, the Ansonia Police Department said that; “The allegation is that the male was allegedly making pro-ISIS statements during the Pledge of Allegiance.”
Ansonia High School officials alerted police who passed the incident report on to the Department of Homeland Security. New Haven Civil Rights Attorney John Williams called the whole situation a shame.
“This is in my view exactly what the terrorists want,” Williams said. “They want to scare us so much that we become crazy and turn on each other.”
The Ansonia Superintendent of Schools also declined an on-camera interview, but released a statement that reads in part; “ …we did not deem the incident a legitimate threat to the safety of students or staff. Out of an abundance of caution, the incident was reported to the appropriate authorities. As far as the Ansonia Public Schools is concerned, the matter is resolved.”
The 15 year-old student is now at an alternative school. Williams – who is not involved in this case – calls this a clear violation of the student’s First Amendment rights to free speech. He said the teenager is being punished for the content of his words.
“It’s pure speech. Not like the proverbial shouting fire in a crowded theater. No harm to anybody, except to himself, because he looks silly.”
According to the minutes from the school board meeting, the student’s mother calls the decision to investigate her son “irrational and impulsive.”