A South Carolina teen didn’t get the graduation day that she’d hoped for, after her mother was escorted from the ceremony and arrested for disorderly conduct.
Did Iesha Cooper’s mother, Shannon, get into a fist fight with another parent? Streak across the stage? Grab the microphone and start singing bad karaoke? Nope. She was arrested for whooping and cheering when her daughter’s name was announced.
At the beginning of the ceremony, the principal of South Florence High School told the crowd that the graduates had voted, and were requesting quiet as the names were read, with a round of applause for all of the students at the end. However, several families didn’t adhere to the school’s wishes, and several people were escorted out of the Florence Civic Center, where the graduation ceremony was being held. Shannon Cooper was taken to the Florence County Detention Center, though, and held for several hours, before being released on $225 bond.
Cooper claims that she knew she would be escorted out for cheering, and so she was already on her way out of the ceremony at the time of her arrest, but she was still detained and handcuffed. “Are y’all serious? Are y’all for real? I mean, that's what I'm thinking in my mind. I didn't say anything. I was just like OK, I can't fight the law. I can't argue with the police, but I'm like are you serious? I didn't do any more than the others did. Which I feel like no one should have went to jail," said Shannon.
Iesha says it was humiliating to realize that her mother had been locked up. “That’s all I can picture, me crying, looking at the police van knowing my mother was in there.”
Family members of some of the other graduates, though, said that the shouts and hollering were so disruptive that often families couldn’t hear the name of the next graduates being read out. One commenter on the website of local station WPDE said, “One lady took her new born baby and held it up in the air like Simba in the Lion King and was screaming at the rail in the upper level! Was disgraceful.”
Although the Cooper family was able to celebrate Iesha’s graduation the next day with a barbeque, Iesha says the arrest will always taint her memories of her special day. “Yesterday can’t be replaced,” she said. “Mama went to jail on my graduation day.”
Was Mom just being a supportive parent, or was she a disruptive influence?
The Wonderful Cynthia Hill is filling in this week so our hard-working Mummy Buzz can take a much-needed break.
In between ballet lasses, Glee Club lessons, swimming lessons, and karate lessons (none of them hers), mom of four Cynthia Hill works full-time as an administrative assistant, does the occasional community theatre production, edits other people's stuff, and writes her own, like her novel, Idol Hands. Her new book should be available later this summer.