High school senior jailed, kicked out of school and may lose Army dream because of pocket knife in car

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Jordan Wiser, 18, was arrested after school officials in Jefferson, Ohio, found a pocket knife in his car. The incident could cost him his dream of joining the Army. (JBWPHOTOGRAPHY)



An Ohio high school student has already been jailed and kicked out of school for having a pocket knife in his car, and now he fears he could lose his dream of serving in the Army.

Jordan Wiser, a student at Ashtabula County Technical School in Jefferson, is finishing up his senior year from home after school officials searched his car in December and found the folding knife and an Airsoft gun. School officials called police, who charged him with illegal conveyance of a weapon onto a school ground based on the three-inch knife.

“I declined to allow them to search myself or my car and that I wanted to talk to my lawyer or my father,” Wiser told FoxNews.com. “They told me it wasn’t an option.”

Wiser, an EMT trainee who hopes to become both a police officer and a soldier, spent 13 days in the Ashtabula County Jail following the incident. The knife, which Wiser said is part of his first responder’s kit and can be used for slicing an accident victim’s seatbelt, was found tucked inside his EMT medical vest in the trunk of the car. The Airsoft gun, which fires non-lethal pellets, was not illegal and was used by Wiser in a shooting club he belongs to, he said.

School officials told FoxNews.com that possession of the pocket knife was a violation of the school’s zero tolerance policy for bringing weapons on campus and that based on a message he posted on an online forum, they had probable cause to search Wiser and his car. They also insisted Wiser consented to the search.

“When we asked, he had said, ‘okay,'” school Superintendent Jerome Brockway said.

Brockway said the district is obliged to motion for expulsion once a student is found with banned items on campus, and said the student handbook states that officials have the right to search a student and his or her vehicle if they have probable cause.

“We indicate that we have the right to search, and he was aware of the policy,” he said, adding that the decision to pursue criminal charges was left to police and prosecutors.

Wiser has a court hearing on April 1. He is hoping for a favorable disposition to put his career plans back on track. He has been kicked out of the Army’s Future Soldier Training System program, and his plans to enlist in August are now in jeopardy. He says he is seriously considering filing a lawsuit.

“It is definitely an option,” said Wiser, who must enroll in a special online program to complete his education.

1 Comment

  • brohdaw

    Not enough details to really say if he should be suspended or not, probable cause listed because of something he posted on FB? Well depends on what he posted and who reported it because they have no right to base probable cause on a FB posting if he's not in school at the time of the posting. My First question was "where/what is the probable cause if they told him 'not an option?" This gets a little "iffy" with the fact that it was in an EMT vest, is he an EMT? If so, then the story should hold up. The pellet gun, my son has one, the two neighbors have one, these are normal for teen boys – maybe (and I mean just maybe) he shouldn't of had it in his car but the article itself states that it's not illegal. It's a shame you can't weed out the good from the bad just from the information itself, schools have to be safe and I'd even go as far as to say they have to nit-pick but not everyone has bad intentions…bad decisions but not bad intentions. I have a utility knife, screw drivers, and other sorts of things in my car at the moment that could be considered a dangerous weapon and I've gone to pick my kids up at school with these things in my car and I've never got anything more than a parking ticket nor would I hurt anyone or anything – but it's there in the car. Kids being safe at school is number one on my priority considering I have two kids in school but it's getting to the point where it's getting innocent people in trouble, missing days of school they shouldn't be, and suffering long after the incident when there were no intentions…but yes I know, what do you do? Taking this kid and the little we know, if he's an EMT and if he had a gun that wasn't illegal, how can he be charged with an "illegal" anything?

Comments are closed.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.