Yes, the kid got charged because he violated Pennsylvania's wiretapping and recording laws. Pennsylvania is a two-party consent state so both parties to the conversation must consent before a recording can be made.
Yeah, and supposedly this school has a zero tolerance policy towards bullying.
And according to TFA, the bullying was happening in the class room, with a teacher present. Which means the school had more or less abandoned their role in policing this, and the kid was left with no other recourse.
Shortly thereafter, a loud noise is heard on the recording, which her son explained was a book being slammed down next to him after a student pretended to hit him in the head with it. When the teacher yells, the student exclaims, "What? I was just trying to scare him!" A group of boys are heard laughing.
What teacher can't be watching this in their own classroom and NOT understand that bullying was happening?
If the teacher who was physically in the room wasn't doing anything, WTF good is telling the school about it? Because the school is either indifferent, clueless, or incompetent to address the issue.
And the officer involved?? I would also say was incompetent or indifferent:
He later answered as to why he thought the disorderly conduct charge applied to this case by saying, "Because his (the student's) actions - he engaged in actions which served no legitimate purpose." He then read the statute as, "Creates a hazardous or physically offensive condition by acts which serve no legitimate purpose."
I would say the legitimate purpose was to demonstrate that the bullying was, in fact happening, was happening while there was a teacher present, and that nothing at all was being done about it. He certainly didn't create a "hazardous or physically offensive condition". Sorry, but I think the cop was a fucking idiot.
I'm inclined to agree with the lawyer on this one. The police misapplied the statute here, forced the kid to destroy the evidence, and then didn't do a single thing about the problem.
And people wonder why kids go into school with guns? I can't even believe the story has a link to a contest to win an AR-15.
I read this whole story as a complete failure of the police and school to understand and deal with the actual issue here.