Middle Schooler Uses Rubbing Alcohol To Spike School Coffee: Does Punishment Go Too Far?

Rubbing alcohol was the weapon of choice for a Wichita middle school student, who spiked the school coffee pot. The incident resulted in the student’s arrest for aggravated battery and criminal threatening.

He was taken to the county’s juvenile detention facility, according to a report from the Smoking Gun news site, which obtained actual police docs of the case.

(The names of both perpetrator and victim were redacted, though police do note that the student was a “14-year-old pupil at Wichita’s Hamilton Middle School,” while the teacher was a 58-year-old male.)

Thankfully, the teacher had little past experience with rubbing alcohol, so when he tasted it, he knew right away that something was wrong and did not consume it.

According to the National Capital Poison Center, the main ingredient in rubbing alcohol is isopropyl alcohol, which can lead to effects such as “sedation, slurred speech, unsteadiness when walking, and vomiting.”

Isopropyl alcohol is also extremely irritating to the digestive tract,” the Center notes. “Drinking a lot of it can cause vomiting, diarrhea, pain, and bleeding in the stomach and intestines. This can lead to dehydration, low blood pressure, shock, and coma.”

Because it didn’t get that far with the male victim, some on the WIBW message boards believe the police might be going overboard in issuing the charges that they did against a 14-year-old.

“‘Was taken into custody!’ Ahhhh, I love it. Once again a teenaged prank is criminalized. Only in America,” wrote one commenter, adding, “‘aggrevated battery’…………….unbelievable.”

“A prank is a prank and did the kid know the harm it could cause?” asked another. “I would have to research it to find out myself.”

Ultimately, police felt like they needed to send a strong message with this case, and so they’re pursuing charges as if the student was aware of the negative and potentially fatal effects that drinking rubbing alcohol can have on an individual.

Typically, if the substance is going to do a lot of harm it has to be taken in large doses, and from the sound of things, the teacher spit it out immediately and was not treated for injury of any kind.

Given that the teacher was unharmed, and there is a real possibility a 14-year-old wouldn’t know just how bad the effects might be, do you think the police are overreacting in this case, or is the offense too serious to ignore?

Sound off in our comments section.

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