By Chris Lane
By Jeff Balke
By Aaron Reiss
By Angelica Leicht
By Dianna Wray
By Aaron Reiss
By Camilo Smith
By Craig Malisow
Attorneys plan to paint the officers as bumbling and abusive, and the teens as an exemplary group who belong to the National Honor Society, win sports scholarships and sing in the school choir. Many come from well-heeled families. Most, if not all, will attend college.
Mojtahedi is an athletic trainer at Dulles. She's CPR-certified and helps wrap ankles and ice legs at school sporting events. But even if she beats the rap against her, she'll still be suspended from participating for 20 days next school year, and will have to perform ten hours of approved community service.
"I was going to be head trainer, but not anymore because this happened," Mojtahedi says. "I guess it's not such a big deal, but it is to me."
Deborah Meyer, an 11th-grader at Dulles, didn't attend the party, but says that "it's all that anybody talks about at school." She says that drinking parties are common among Dulles students, though rarely discovered, and thinks that classmates such as Mojtahedi deserve to be punished.
"I thought it was pretty fair," says Meyer, who sits on shaded pavement just outside the school with her knees folded to her chest. "I mean, come on, there's alcohol and 40 people there -- you're going to get an MIP for that."
Franks, meanwhile, is quick to point out that he does not condone underage drinking. But he's convinced that, in this incident, the police and the school grossly overreacted.
"These kids got screwed," Franks says. "The police act like teenagers are a hate group in Sugar Land; and the school district's system is 'You serve the punishment, and then we'll do the trial.' "