A fifteen-year-old Texas teenager faces a felony forgery charge for using a ten-dollar bill to buy a ham sandwich and chips.
In November of 2015, Alec Hunter found a ten-dollar bill on the floor at Elkins High School in Fort Bend, Texas and attempted to buy his lunch with it. After the cafeteria worker ran a special pen across the bill and discovered it was counterfeit, she passed it on to a school police officer.
Two months later, the Hunter family received information in the mail stating that Alec was being charged with a felony.
In the last three years, the Houston area school districts have handled dozens of counterfeit money cases. In every case where race is listed in the files, the suspects have been students of color.
Alec Hunter and his father Louis Hunter joined Roland Martin on Friday’s edition of NewsOne Now to discuss their case, which has been scheduled to begin May 23rd.
The younger of the Hunters explained local area police and school administrators are “overreacting” and said his family is spending over $15,000 for an attorney as well as legal fees “over a fake $10 bill.” Alec added, “I find that really irresponsible of them.”
Louis Hunter said, “It’s frustrating to me as a parent, his mother and I have been the biggest advocates for Alec — he’s always performed well, he’s never been in trouble, by and large he is an A, B student.”
Mr. Hunter explained the school has “never reached out us” regarding the allegations. The only call they received about this peculiar situation came from the Ft. Bend ISD Police Department “indicating they wanted him to make a statement” to law enforcement. Alec’s mother did not want her son to comply with that request without being present and police proceeded forward with the case.
They later received a letter in the mail wanting Alec to “accept deferred prosecution, probation, counseling sessions.” The elder Hunter said, “It was a running theme that he was somehow an at-risk child.”
Mr. Hunter also stated there has never been an investigation, law enforcement has never interviewed witnesses, “there was never an attempt by the school to call myself in or call his mother into the school.” He added, “We did not want him speaking with law enforcement on a criminal case and I don’t think any responsible parent would want that.”
Hunter explained there were cameras that should have recorded everything, but those cameras were switched sometime after the incident.
“He didn’t get caught with a backpack full of ten-dollar bills … he found ten dollars,” said Hunter.
Though it would seem as if local law enforcement and Elkins High School are trying to paint the picture that Alec Hunter is an at-risk adolescent and are looking to smear his name with criminal prosecution Mr. Hunter defiantly said, “They can’t have him. They can’t have this one.”
Watch Roland Martin, Alec Hunter, Louis Hunter and the NewsOne Now panel discuss the Hunters’ fight against the ten-dollar counterfeit case in the video clip above.
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