Florida teen expelled, arrested after blowing up water bottle

A Florida high school student says she was merely conducting a science experiment, but the school district argues that it was a breach of conduct.

Did a teenager's curiosity get the better of her?

A high school student at Bartow High School  in Bartow, Fla., was arrested and expelled from school for allegedly blowing up a water bottle, Florida's WTSP.com reports. According to WTSP, 16-year-old Kiera Wilmot was the last person anybody at her high school expected to get in trouble with the authorities.

Student expelled, arrested for 'botched science experiment'

Student expelled, arrested for 'botched science experiment'
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Wilmot's case is currently being discussed heavily on social media sites, including Reddit and Reason, where people are asking why she was expelled over what appeared to be a science experiment gone wrong.

Wilmot is accused of mixing household chemicals in an 8-ounce water bottle on school premises Monday, causing the top to come off with a pop and produce some smoke.

A police report obtained by the Miami New Times shows that Wilmot was mixing toilet bowl cleaner and aluminum foil.

The incident didn't cause any injuries or damage.

WTSP reports that Wilmot told police she was "merely conducting a science experiment." Although her teachers did not know anything about the project and it was not conducted during a class, her principal Ron Pritchard agreed, calling her an exemplary student with a good record.

"She made a bad choice. Honestly, I don't think she meant to ever hurt anyone," the principal told the station. "She wanted to see what would happen [when she mixed the chemicals] and was shocked by what it did. Her mother is shocked, too."

It could have been a science project or just curiosity, he added.

Most of her classmates also agreed that she wasn't trying to hurt anybody.

Wilmot was taken into custody by a school resources officer after the explosion and charged with possession/discharge of a weapon on school grounds and discharging a destructive device.

She has been expelled from school and will continue her education through an expulsion program.

Wilmot's school district, Polk County School, released a statement saying the incident "was a serious breach of conduct."

"Anytime a student makes a bad choice it is disappointing to us," the statement said. "In order to maintain a safe and orderly learning environment, we simply must uphold our code of conduct rules. We urge our parents to join us in conveying the message that there are consequences to actions. We will not compromise the safety and security of our students and staff."


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