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Student pulled off school bus, charged with littering

Posted August 22, 2008

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— The mother of a Hoke County High School student complained Friday that her son was pulled off his school bus Wednesday afternoon and charged with littering.

Guy Mitchell, 16, said he was swinging a plastic bottle around in the bus as he rode home after school when the  bottle flew out the window.

"I was just, like, swinging ... but I wasn't swinging to make it go out the window. But the wind caught the bottle," Mitchell said.

The bottle caught the attention of a Hoke County sheriff's deputy who was behind the bus on Rockfish Road. He stopped the bus, stepped on board and asked who threw the bottle.

Mitchell admitted he was responsible, and the deputy pulled him off the bus and arrested him.

"He just got me straight off the bus and (was) saying he didn't believe me that it was an accident," he said. "Then, (he) told me to get my stuff, and (he) threw the cuffs on me."

Mitchell said he wasn't being disrespectful to the deputy, who drove him to the Hoke County Jail, where he was booked on a charge of littering.

His mother paid his $500 bail to get him out of jail.

"My son being in jail, booked, fingerprinted, mug shot – that was a little too much for me," Arwanda Cook said.

Cook described her son as a good teen and said he wouldn't start trouble.

"I think by my son telling the truth, (the deputy) just wanted to make an example out of my son," she said.

Sheriff Hubert Peterkin declined to discuss the incident, saying he doesn't address citizen complaints in the media. He said he would be "happy to sit down" with Cook to talk about her concerns.

She said she had left a message for Peterkin with her cell phone number. Peterkin said he had not received any call.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • yellowhorses Aug 25, 2008

    Guy Mitchell, 16, said he was swinging a plastic bottle around in the bus as he rode home after school when the bottle flew out the window.

    Well, better out the window than into some other child's face. If he is such an upstanding person, why was he swinging the bottle around at all?

  • tsquaring Aug 22, 2008

    I wish every one that litters would get arrested and fined heavily for it. I'm sick of the trash (litterbugs) trashing this state.

  • educationisliberation Aug 22, 2008

    being a teacher, in my experience students usually don't offer up information about something inappropriate unless it was truly an accident. of course, i don't know the whole situation but that's my experience with students. say the mom/son are being perfectly honest, this may lead the student to think otherwise in the future.

  • justme28301 Aug 22, 2008

    Cheers to the deputy!!! It's his job....deal with it!! I too am sure it was more than just littering. [I have a child that rides the bus and some of the kids that ride buses have NO respect for the schools, the bus drivers and especially the other students riding with them!! I think picking up trash along the side of the road for ummm say a week or so after school everyday might [okay it COULD] teach him a lesson!! And heck, get Mom to ride the bus with him for a week or so and let her see just how the kids on those buses do act!!! Geez Mom, DEAL with it!

  • Zog Aug 22, 2008

    In all probability attitude and lack of a picture ID is the reason behind the trip down town. If you write a ticket with out a good ID, you’ve just about guaranteed an innocent person an identity theft problem. Honest people carry ID’s, thugs and criminals conveniently don’t have theirs so if they can talk cops into taken their word for who they are, they will use yours instead.

  • 1Moms_View Aug 22, 2008

    Ooops I meant to say Hubert,not Herbert.

  • JofNC Aug 22, 2008

    I strongly get the feeling this was REALLY AN ACCIDENT!

    Why didn't he just drive the student to his parent's house and speak with them? Instead, I suspect he figured, let's go ahead and get this guy's info on file "in case he becomes a thug".

    I don't usually pull the race card, but really, come on now, I'm white... if it had been a white kid, would this have turned out the same way?

    I doubt it.

  • 1Moms_View Aug 22, 2008

    Island girl, would you rather your child hit the windshield of an innocent driver breaking it and causing the driver to wreck? There has to be more to this story than the liberal media is reporting.

    I'm glad the sheriff will not discuss the case. The public does not need to know every single detail of every ticket issued.

    I wonder if this is the same Herbert Peterkin that used to be a SRO in Fayetteville (and with FPD) back in the late 1980s. If so, I witnessed him many times dealing with problem teens. He did a good job in that position if it is the same person. One morning, a child (7th or 8th grader) was in the hallway with a gun. It was a fake gun, but from the end of the long hallway, hard to tell that. The foolish child could have gotten himself, other students, or teachers shot or killed if not for the actions of that SRO. He made sure no one was injured, including the stupid boy who put himself in danger by pretending the gun was real and threatening people.

  • iamforjustice Aug 22, 2008

    This nice young man did not litter. This is an injustice and a farce. The officer was not doing his job. This is clearly a case of a cop gone bad. This cop should be stripped of his duties and incarcerated for doing this to a fine young innocent child.

  • jetset Aug 22, 2008

    If Peterkin will be happy to discuss the situation with the mother, why in the heck doesn't she do this rather than whining to the media? Boohoo.....her child has been wronged by the po-po.