Civil Liberties

Charges Dropped Against Kiera Wilmot

An infamous zero-tolerance case has a happy ending.


Good news in the case of Kiera Wilmot, the Florida teen who was expelled and charged with two felonies after conducting an unauthorized but harmless science experiment on the grounds of her school: The authorities have dropped the charges against her. Meanwhile, Boing Boing reports that

Homer Hickam—the writer and former NASA engineer whose memoir is the basis of the movie October Sky—started a Crowdtilt campaign to send Wilmot and her twin sister Kayla to the Advanced Space Academy program at the U.S. Space Camp in Huntsville, Ala. The cost of space camp can run upwards of $1200. Hickam paid for Kiera Wilmot to go and the Crowdtilt campaign raised the other $1200 for her sister, plus extra money for their travel expenses. The campaign hit its $2500 goal in just two days and is now up to $2920. Hickam says the extra money is going to the girls' mother.

The school that expelled Wilmot has not yet said whether it will let her back, and a second Crowdtilt campaign, which raised $8,000 for a defense fund, is going to apply the remaining money to Wilmot's education. The case reportedly drained the family's finances, so the Internet's assistance is especially welcome.