Ill. schools could get option to suspend students with violent felonies

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by KMOV.com Staff

KMOV.com

Posted on February 12, 2014 at 7:26 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 12 at 7:40 PM

  (KMOV) -- A 17-year-old charged with raping a pregnant girl in the Belleville East High School parking lot last December, is back in school. He is facing two aggravated battery charges.

A student’s parent wanted to know why David Fields was allowed back in school after seeing the New 4 report in December. The answer he found disturbed him.

Since the alleged aggravated assaults in September did not happen on school property, Illinois law required the district to allow Fields back into the classroom.

“There are violent felons who are attending our schools and the school administrators can't do a thing about it,” said parent, Ed McCann.

So McCann took action by contacting State Representative Jay Hoffman. Hoffman introduced a bill that would give school districts the option of suspending or expelling students charged with a violent felony, no matter where the alleged crime happened.

Belleville Superintendent Jeff Dosier said this would have allowed the district to keep fields off school property and create a safe learning environment.

The current law in Missouri is very similar to the Illinois law. State representative Hoffman said he thinks there is a good chance his bill will pass in the current Illinois legislative session and the changes would take effect immediately.

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