Leader Blues

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

TOP STORY>> Students expelled for hit list in Cabot

IN SHORT: Eight pupils get year-long expulsions that could be appealed this summer, but others can’t return for a year.

By SARA GREENE
Leader staff writer

The Cabot School Board decided during its regular board meeting last night to expel the 10 students involved with making three hit lists in the last month.

The board’s action follows Lonoke County Prosecutor Lona McCastlain’s decision to prosecute the five students involved with creating the first two hit lists.

The board expelled eight students for a year with early review, which means those students can go to early review with administrators during the summer and petition to be allowed into the district’s alternative school. That would allow them to return to their regular schools by next January.

Two students were expelled for violating board policy of terroristic threatening and were expelled for a year without early review.
All of the expelled students will receive no credit for the 2005 school year.

The first hit list was written by four male students at Cabot Junior High North and was found in a backpack that was left on a bus on April 29.

It contained the names of 15 male students suspected of turning in two brothers for having prescription drugs on campus.

It had “hit list” written across the top and “GMB” written on the side. School resource officer Larry Thompson said “GMB” stands for “Gang Members’ Blood,” but police have found no gang affiliation.

The second list was found later that day in the girls’ bathroom.

Police said it was meant as a joke because no females were on the first list.

It also had “hit list” written across the top.

“I’ll write more people down later,” was written at the end of the list.

The students who wrote the third list turned it in at Cabot Middle School North on May 6.

They were caught when principal Renee Calhoon compared the handwriting on the list to the writing on their school assignments.
The students were suspended after admitting to making the hit list as copycat list from the Cabot Junior High North incidents.

No charges have been filed in connection with the third hit because McCastlain has not yet received the case file.