So here's the chain of events:
Nice 19-year-old girl from MIT goes to pick up her boyfriend at the airport last September. Perhaps in honor of that special occasion, Star Simpson is wearing a sweatshirt that she made herself. It consists of a circuit board wired with green LEDs.
She makes an inquiry at the information desk, and then "Troopers, with machine guns aimed at Simpson, surrounded her outside the terminal and ordered her to raise her hands."
Months later, after fighting off criminal charges about a hoax bomb, Simpson wound up with a sentence of 50 hours of community service, pronounced yesterday. She also issued an astonishingly groveling apology through her lawyer:
"I want to apologize for the results of my conduct on Sept. 21, 2007," Simpson said in the statement. "Although I never intended to act in a disorderly fashion, I now realize that the shirt I created caused alarm and concern at Logan Airport.
"I am appreciative to the Massachusetts State Police for their diligence in protecting our citizens and apologize for the expense that was caused that day," she added.
Simpson "is scheduled to return to MIT this fall for her junior year but will spend the first semester with other MIT students installing an electrical power grid in a Guatemalan village."
You know, after she finishes those 50 hours of community service.
The opening sentence of the Globe's coverage pretty much captures the absurdity of the situation: Star Simpson "apologized for the actions that nearly led to her being shot by State Police as a suspected terrorist."
Via Hit & Run reader Jilly