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Parents Of Students Targeted In Facebook Posts Say Expulsions Were Appropriate

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Three students were expelled from a school in northwest Indiana, for comments they made on Facebook, about which classmates they would like to kill. (Credit: CBS)

Pamela Jones Pamela Jones
Pamela Jones serves as a general assignment reporter for CBS 2...
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GRIFFITH, Ind. (CBS) -- A very different take on three-eighth graders from Griffith, Ind. who were banned from school after making threats against other students on Facebook.

Some parents say they are cyber-bullies. CBS 2’s Pamela Jones reports parents say the school acted appropriately.

These posts set off alarm bells for Griffith Middle School officials: “I wanna light someone on fire,” “I have gasoline we could use let’s get matches and lighters,” and “Let’s kill the girl we’re talking about right now.”

The Facebook posts were threatening enough to make student Courtney Tinsley fear for her life.

“I felt like really depressed. And I felt like everybody was out to get me,” Tinsley said.

She was named in the conversation just before a post saying “She puts the easy in sleazy.”

They’re part of nine pages of online conversation from January that Tinsley and her mom copied and saved — posts that got student Kennedy Fortier expelled.

Kennedy says the ugly status updates were just jokes and that no one was really targeted for harm.

But parents of the kids named don’t believe that.

“They further go on to talk about how they would use pink box cutters and put paper towels around the handle so there wouldn’t be any fingerprints. To me, that’s not joking,” mother Regina Webb said.

Fourteen-year-old Ashlie Shipp says she was targeted, too.

“If somebody days that they’re gonna kill somebody, whether it be through an email or face to face or whatever, to me that’s a criminal act, you know?” her father, Joe Shipp, says.

The ACLU has sued the school, saying it’s unfair for the students to be expelled for online posts.