Attorney will represent teen arrested for pocket knife at Allatoona High
by Leo Hohmann
September 20, 2013 12:25 AM | 10240 views | 21 21 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Andy Williams, left, will learn the fate of his son Andrew's future at Allatoona High School on Monday when school administrators decide whether to expel Andrew from school for having a pocket knife in the console of his car on school grounds. <br>Staff/Jeff Stanton
Andy Williams, left, will learn the fate of his son Andrew's future at Allatoona High School on Monday when school administrators decide whether to expel Andrew from school for having a pocket knife in the console of his car on school grounds.
Staff/Jeff Stanton
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ACWORTH — An Allatoona High School student who was arrested on a felony weapons charge for having a pocket knife in the console of his car had his disciplinary tribunal continued to a later date.

Andrew Williams, 18, was accused by a fellow, unnamed student of smoking marijuana in his car while parked in the school parking lot Sept. 5. The anonymous student reported Williams to a campus police officer, who then informed an assistant principal.

That assistant principal, Sam Sanford, searched Williams’ car without getting a search warrant or asking permission, according to Williams. While no marijuana was found, Sanford did find a pocket knife with a 3-inch blade and turned the teenager over to police to be arrested.

Williams was also suspended pending a disciplinary hearing that will determine whether he can return to school and finish out his senior year.

But Williams’ father, Andy Williams, said Wednesday that he requested more time in order to hire an attorney.

“I asked for a continuance so I could get an attorney and of course there was no way they could deny me that,” Andy Williams said.

He said he has now hired an attorney who has advised him not to speak further about the case.

The Cobb County School District has declined to comment on the case.

Andrew and Andy Williams said the school administrators have recommended that Andrew be expelled for the rest of the school year.

Of more concern is the felony criminal charge of “carrying a weapon in a school safety zone.” If he is found guilty of that charge, he could face two to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

He is also worried that his plans for college and his future ability to find employment could be impacted.

Like many states, Georgia passed strict “zero tolerance” laws against weapons on school campuses after the mass shooting at Columbine High School in Colorado in 1999. One of the forbidden items in Georgia’s statute is any knife blade larger than 2 inches.

Williams said he kept the 3-inch pocket knife in his console in case he got in a wreck and needed to cut off his seatbelt. He experienced a serious wreck in February, in which his father said the teen helped pull his friends from a vehicle he thought was going to explode.

Comments
(21)
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QK
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March 11, 2014
I've carried a knife in my pocket every day since I was in the 7th grade. I'm now 42 years old and helpless people around me constantly ask to borrow my knife. Don't be helpless and don't punish those who are prepared.
JoeFNA
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March 10, 2014
Mike in Smyrna , do you really think that the BOE can take away a natural right, protected by the Georgia and US constitutions, away with a line in a contract?!?!
get3coffinsready
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March 10, 2014
Hope he sues them down to their shoelaces and collects big-time.
Really ??
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October 07, 2013
This is truly insanity. The only dope in that car was the Asst. Principal.

I see the comments fall into 2 camps, for or against the student. As I read and re-read this, keep this in mind, your talking about 1 Inch. If the blade was just 2" no problem, however, that extra inch make the kid public enemy #1. Again....REALLY ???

Thank god the Asst Principal didn't open the trunk and find the tire iron, or possibly jumper cables...oh lord the carnage that could have happened.

I feel sorry for this kid, and even more sorry for all of us in the community that this is acceptable conduct for school administrators.
MAY-RETTA SURVIVOR
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September 21, 2013
With most young people, this young man - and apparently his "parent" as well - has little or no respect for the law.

It should be interesting to watch how Williams' attorney will defend stupidity.
Frances Morris
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March 11, 2014
You must be joking!! Puleeze!
Padraigan
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March 11, 2014
It is more than interesting to note your "fawning at the feet of mammon" stupidity coupled with your lack of care for those targeted by the fascist creatures running Amerika and ruining America. Your sheep like mentality ensures your total enslavement as a hand maiden of the matrix. The law is an ass as are you.
John Watson
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March 11, 2014
When were you released from the lunatic asylum by mistake?
anonymous
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September 20, 2013
I am just glad this kid did not have a partially eaten pop tart in his car that resembled an "L" shape. No doubt they would have brought in the FEDS and charged him with terrorism...and probably some hate crime (the worst of crimes).

Le Grande Type
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September 20, 2013
The attorney should insist on a jury trial. The chances of getting 12 people of zero intelligence on one panel is low.

What we really need to get rid of are the people who put forth these Zero Intelligence policies

Mike In Smyrna
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September 20, 2013
What is the real story? The initial article was slanted and portrayed Andrew as a victim. A laid-back kid, girlfriend, part-time job, college dreams, and an unsung hero haunted by demons.

Next - there was the pro-Andrew, William Lewis quest editorial complete with headshot.

What are the details of the auto accident that has been referenced, and referenced and referenced? Should Andrew be nominated for a Carnegie Hero medal?

So now the father has hired an attorney, who has advised him not to speak further about the case. It does not appear that the clients are listening to their attorney. What is the attorney's name?

The father should request that a MDJ reporter be allowed to attend the disciplinary tribunal. There is no telling what trumped-up evidence the evil Cobb County School District will produce.

anonymous
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September 20, 2013
Mike, I sense that you are closely associated with the Cobb school system or the school police force. No one else will even pretend that the nazi like police-state antics and potential penalties of the "educators" and the school police that this young man was subjected to are anywhere near OK.

rhonda wilson
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September 21, 2013
i think he should be punished
IceDogg
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September 20, 2013
"Like many states, Georgia passed strict “zero tolerance” laws against weapons on school campuses after the mass shooting at Columbine High School in Colorado in 1999." -- Why is the knee-jerk reaction to violence always to further disarm the innocent potential victims? Psychopathic killers, such as those at Columbine, will continue to kill regardless of your “zero tolerance” laws, but those laws will help ensure the killers meet less resistance along the way.
sue them!
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September 20, 2013
Hope this boy's father sues the pants off of the school. This is an absolute disgrace, and furthermore, a wonderful example of what happens when incompetents are put in charge. Terrible, and this could ruin the boy's life.
dustoff
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September 20, 2013
First off a school official does not have the authority to search a locked vehicle even if it is on school property. Only a legally sworn officer of the law can make a search and then only with probable cause and here say evidence is not probable cause.

Second the knife in question is actually sold as an emergency rescue tool.

So what are the idiots going to ban next lug wrenches because they consider them weapons rather tools????

If the school officials spent half the time they do on BS actually teaching the students would benefit greatly.
Mike In Smyrna
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September 20, 2013
I am not sure where you obtained your JD – However, it plainly states on the BOE parking permit application that the applicant consents to any searches of the vehicle for any reason, at anytime while the vehicle is on school property. The application is acknowledge (signed) by the student and the parent/guardian.
rhonda wilson
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September 21, 2013
i think that this is true
Cars are just traps
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September 20, 2013
This kid's parents allow him to drive to school and already here is a price, however relatively mild, for that driving.

Live and learn something: Cars will destroy you sooner or later. The more chance you give them, the sooner you get destroyed.

Maybe there will be legal destruction for you (have you ever heard the NONSTOP "call a lawyer on the guy with the tie" commercials on the black radio stations?), perhaps destruction of your blood and bones is in store for you (ask Sheriff Warren about his bones), but your destruction by car definitely will involve your financial destruction (what if your car costs had all been saved and invested over your lifetime? how many MILLIONS would you have by now? If you are over 50 and have had just average cars since you were sixteen, you'd have over TWO MILLION DOLLARS saved by now if you'd never owned cars... so what do your investments look like? a nearly empty Solo cup?).

Get out now, kid. Get out now.

A whole lot of kids have it figured out these days and want nothing to do with cars and the various prices we old folk willing pay for owning one.

We old folks been had. We say we can't retire because of war or recession or Obamacare or whatever the latest thing is, but honestly it's because of a lifetime of paying for cars that we can't retire.

Those carless kids are the smart ones. Carless and carefree.
Voice of reason
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September 20, 2013
You, sir, are a nutcase.
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