Student expelled for high school Counter-Strike map
Texas school's war on game's virtual war on terrorism
A Texas high school that suspended and then expelled a student for creating a map of his school for the PC shooting game Counter-Strike has released new details of the incident.
The 17-year-old boy's trouble started when the school received a phone call from a parent, one day after the Virginia Tech murders who complained her child had played a computer game that "involved killing" and "took place inside an animated map of Clements high School."
Counter-Strike is a tactical first-person shooter game that pits a team of counter-terrorists against a team of terrorists.
After the call, officials at the suburban Houston school promptly found the boy's website where the map was being distributed.
The police report said the boy (who was not identified, as he has not been charged with any crime) was brought to the Associate Principal's office where he was frisked and questioned.
The student "stated that it was simply a game and that he never intended for any violence to occur at the school or for anyone to get hurt in any way."
The boy's mother arrived and gave police permission to search her son's bedroom. The police found nothing illegal in the student's bedroom, but confiscated five decorative swords in the search.
Sword ownership rights have been under heavy fire since they were determined to be the leading cause of death during the Siege of Acre in the third crusade.
School officials determined, due to the violent nature of the video game, the iron-age WMD (weapon of mass decapitation) and other undisclosed information, the matter should be classified as a "Level 3" situation.
According to the school manual, "Level 3" covers situations where a student "engages in conduct relating to a false alarm or report or a terrorist threat involving a public school."
The student was immediately transfered from Clements to the M.R. Wood Alternative Education Center, which specializes in special learning needs, and apparently, has a crack terrorism response force.
The police determined that no criminal offense had occurred and there were no threats on any specific person or people. It's quite common for youngsters to craft maps of their schools and other familiar places for these types of games.
The incident has sparked outrage in the county's Chinese community, which the student's family is a part of.
Community news website FortBendNow reports that on Monday, two school trustees attempted to bring the case before the Fort Bend Independent School District Board to expedite an appeal for the student. The trustees requested Board President Steve Smelley (yes, that's his real name) call a special meeting, which he did — but the president and three other board trustees boycotted the meeting — leaving the school's superintendent and one other trustee to face 120 members of the local Chinese community who arrived to show support for the boy's mother.
Because there were not enough board members present, the meeting had to be called off.
The site reports that members of the board boycotted the meeting because they believe the meeting request was an attempt to pander to the Chinese community to gain votes for an upcoming election.
FBISD spokeswoman Mary Ann Simpson and Smelley told FortBendNow that there are other mitigating circumstances — which they declined to specify — which came out of the police search.
"They got more stuff that doesn't look too good," Smelley told the website.
The police report did not appear to mention what Smelley was talking about. ®