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Student suspended for NRA shirt back in class

- - Monday, April 22, 2013

A West Virginia teen who was arrested and suspended for wearing a National Rifle Association T-shirt to school returned to class Monday wearing the same shirt that got him into trouble.

Jared Marcum, a 14-year-old student in Logan, W.Va., said his NRA T-shirt with a picture of a gun on it ignited a dispute Thursday between him and a teacher at Logan Middle School that ended in his arrest.

"I'm still confused, thoroughly confused," he told a local TV station. "The school didn't even make a statement to the news agencies, much less myself."

Logan police arrested the teen after he was sent to the school office and again refused to remove the shirt. Jared said that he charged with disrupting the educational process and obstructing an officer.

He returned to class Monday with students across Logan County sporting similar shirts to show their solidarity.

School officials told Jared that his one-day suspension was appropriate because he was being disruptive.

Ben White, the boy's lawyer, disputed that position, contending he was exercising his free speech rights.

"Their version is that the suspension was for disrupting the educational process, not the shirt," Mr. White told the Associated Press. "I don't see how he materially disrupted the educational process."

Mr. White said the county prosecutor's office is reviewing the case.