Thursday, April 06, 2006

Students in School Drug Raid to Split $1.2 Million

Dozens of high school students who were subjected to an armed drug raid of their school will split $1.2 million under a settlement preliminarily approved by a federal judge Tuesday. The fourteen officers who entered Stratford High School in Goose Creek, SC in November 2003 with guns drawn found no drugs or weapons, and made no arrests.

“It appears the Goose Creek Police Department succeeded only in finding the one drug-free high school in America,” said Kris Krane, executive director of Students for Sensible Drug Policy. “These poor students truly deserve this settlement, but no amount of money can ever make up for the terror that police and school officials put them through.”

Although most students at Stratford are white, Principal George McCrackin ordered the raid to take place early in the morning when the overwhelming majority of those present in the hallway were black. Black students at Stratford disproportionately live in communities that require them to be bussed in earlier than other students. Principal McCrackin resigned shortly after dramatic surveillance camera tapes of the raid were widely publicized.

The class action lawsuit against the Goose Creek police and the Berkeley County School District was brought on behalf of fifty-nine students involved in the raid. The proposed settlement would create two classes of affected students. Students in the first class, those named in the suit and those who received psychological counseling after the raid, could receive about $11,000 each. The second class would include other students in the hallway during the raid, who could receive about $6,000 each. The specific amount of money awarded to each class will depend on how many of the approximately 140 eligible students elect to take part in the settlement.

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Anonymous said...

That'll buy tons of weed, man! Awesome!

Jonathan Perri said...

It probably would buy a good amount of marijuana. But as this search pointed out, none of these students had any drugs on them, so you have no idea if they use drugs. They will probably use it to get into college. Asshole.

Anonymous said...

1.2 million is not enough.

Micah Daigle said...

Let's not forget the key role that SSDP played in the aftermath of this event.

News of the raid happened to break at the same time that many SSDPers were attending a drug policy conference. As soon as we heard the news, a hotel room was quickly turned into a rapid-response "war room". Within hours, SSDP was sending out press releases, and within days, Dan Goldman (SSDP's current Director of Outreach and Alumni) was on the ground in Goose Creek helping to mobilize students and parents.

Now THAT's active activism.

Clay S. Conrad said...

Great news. It's not nearly enough - a public apology would be needed to come close to that. And those responsible will never give that.

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