Patrick Dimarchi has a 3.5 GPA and, until last week, a spotless disciplinary record. That is until a random search of the Stonewall Jackson High School parking lot turned up a knife in the back of his car. "It was a mistake, and I had no bad intentions with that weapon," said Dimarchi.
Dimarchi said the knife was leftover from a weekend camping trip. He says he simply forgot to take it out of his car. Shenandoah County Public Schools have a strict policy like many school districts that prohibits any knife with a blade longer than three inches to be on school property. "I understand there are guns nowadays, and I understand that there should be concerns, but the no tolerance is taken out of context," said Patrick's mom, Candice Dimarchi.
Patrick has been suspended for 10 days and could be expelled. Other students at Stonewall are facing similar charges. "The state of Virginia gives them leeway to analyze these cases on a case by case basis," said Candice Dimarchi, something she hopes the school board will consider.
TV-3 attempted to contact the Shenandoah County School Board Office but they were unavailable for comment.