While acknowledging that school administrators are justifiably concerned that, in light of recent events, websites may be the preamble for student violence, a school district presented no evidence that a student’s ‘mock obituary’ Web postings were intended to threaten anyone or that they manifested any violent tendencies, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington held in granting a TRO preventing the student’s suspension (Emmett v. Kent School District No. 415, D. Wash., No. C00-0269C, 2/23/00, avail. 4/24/00).
The plaintiff, Nick Emmett, is an eighteen-year-old senior at Kentlake High School. He has a grade point average of 3.95, is co-captain of the basketball team, and has no disciplinary history. On Feb. 13, 2000, he posted a Web page on the Internet that was created from his home without using school resources or time. The Web page was titled the “Unofficial Kentlake High Home Page,” and included disclaimers warning a visitor that the site was not sponsored by the school and was designed for entertainment purposes only.
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