From the annals of no good deed goes unpunished comes the latest tribulation of a teenage volleyball player who was punished by her Massachusetts school for coming to the aid of a drunk friend who needed a ride home from a party.
Erin Cox, was suspended for five games and stripped of her captaincy of the volleyball team at North Andover High School for the incident two weeks ago. She received a call from a drunk friend at a party. When she arrived police were already there making arrests and handing out summonses to everyone at the party for underage drinking.
Cox was given a summons even though she hadn’t been drinking and at least one officer had vouched for her sobriety. The school acted because it has a zero tolerance policy for drinking.
“She did what she thought was right, and I'm very proud of her,” Eleanor Cox, Erin’s mother, told WBZ-TV in Boston.
Asked how Erin was doing, Eleanor Cox told “Good Morning America” on Tuesday: “She's very fragile, and I'm worried about her. I'm very worried about her.”
The Cox family filed a lawsuit against the school district, but it was dismissed last week. Since then the issue has gained national attention. The school district has not commented on the issue.
Attorney Geoffrey Bok, who represented the school in court, told the Boston Herald that school officials were left with little choice once police became involved. “The school is trying to take a very serious and principled stand regarding alcohol. And we all get that. Teen drinking is a serious problem.”
In a statement read on “Good Morning America,” the family attorney, Wendy Murphy, disagreed.
“By punishing Erin Cox, the North Andover School District sends a contrary and very dangerous message -- that young people are better off letting their friends drive drunk,” she said.
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