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Teens arrested after building snow fort
By David McLaughlin / News Staff Writer
Wednesday, January 26, 2005

FRAMINGHAM -- Police arrested two teenagers on charges of disorderly conduct and trespassing after they and a group of friends used their day off from school yesterday to build an elaborate snow cave at Framingham High.

Jenna Schroder, 18, and Jason Osorio, 18, were arrested after digging out their cave, complete with an escape hatch and standing room for six, from a towering mound of plowed snow in the school parking lot.

The arresting officer put a third senior at the school, Edwin Snead, 17, into his cruiser but later let him go.

Snead, who hopes to go to the Air Force Academy next year, yesterday complained the officer, James Smith, was overly aggressive toward him and his friends and treated them like "terrible terrorists."

"The thing on the side of their cruisers says 'Dedicated to Excellence in Public Service.' I didn't see that today," he said.

Snead's mother, Louise, who was at the police station with her son yesterday afternoon described the incident as "unsettling." She said the arrest of the two teens was "uncalled for."

"I think it's unfortunate because these are great seniors, hardworking....They're (having) good, clean fun. They were asked to leave. They were going to, and it turned ugly," she said.

Police, however, insist the arrests were justified because the students refused to leave the parking lot. Framingham police spokesman Lt. Vincent Alfano said Smith asked the teens repeatedly to leave, and they "basically told him to go to hell."

"It was a really bad scene. The students were not cooperative at all with Officer Smith. He was very reasonable with them," he said.

An assistant superintendent for the school system called police, Alfano said, because the students were digging tunnels in the massive snow piles, creating "a very, very dangerous" condition.

When Smith arrived at about 2:30 p.m., he spent 15 minutes "negotiating" with them, but they continued to give him a hard time, Alfano said.

"It's a pretty cut and dried case. I don't think a lot of other officers would have been as patient as Officer Smith," he said.

Framingham High School Principal Ralph Olsen was at the school when police hauled the students away, but he did not learn about it until contacted by the department. He said the school resource officer told him the students "really resisted and acted immaturely." They may face discipline from the school, he said.

"The snow is packed high near the main entrance to the school," Olsen said. "If it collapsed on the students, we'd be talking about student fatalities."

Snead insisted he, Schroder and Osorio were getting ready to leave when Smith made his arrests. He said at least one of them may file a complaint with the department.

Framingham High School called off school yesterday because of the blizzard's aftermath. Snead said the trio started digging around noon, working on a snow pile that was about 25 feet high. He described it as the best snow cave he has ever built.

High school students Edgar Fernandez, 17, and Jessica Krot, 17, who went to the police station shortly after the arrests, agreed that police overreacted by busting their two friends.

"I never heard of getting arrested for digging a hole in the snow," Fernandez said.
 

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Answer, no cop should have to spend 15 mintues telling a kid to get the hell out of anywhere. You may get to play that with mom and dad, but cops...no way...that 15 minutes could have been spent doing something else....

When I was a kid, a cop told you do do something...."Hey kid get off that fence." "Hey kid get off your babysitter", "hey kid quit shooing those squirrels" you did what he said.
 

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Off topic on the arest but on topic for the snow fort.

I remeber growing up in an apartment complex in Amherst (Pufftoon Village) we use to do the same thing in the large snow mounds made by the snow plows. Great fun. One year a college student made the mound into a giant lion. Looked awsome. I have a picture of me on top of it back home.

Miss the days of having a day off from school and making snow forts, having snow ball fights and so on.

Do me a favor people and enjoy all the snow for me. Do not get much here in Kuwait.
 

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Snow fort builders in court
By David McLaughlin / News Staff Writer
Thursday, January 27, 2005

FRAMINGHAM -- Two Framingham teens were in court yesterday to face charges they trespassed on school property when they dug a snow cave out of a mound of plowed snow in the high school's parking lot.

Jenna Schroeder, 18, and Jason Osorio, 18, pleaded not guilty in Framingham District Court to charges of trespassing and disorderly conduct following their arrest Tuesday afternoon. They are due back in court Feb. 18 for a pretrial conference.

The two teens and their mothers rushed out of court after the brief hearing.

"I'm really distraught about the whole thing," Schroeder said, though she declined further comment.

Martha Osorio, Jason's mother, called the arrests "unfair" and said the two students were only playing in the snow.

"It's really ludicrous what happened to them," said Betti Schroeder, Jenna's mother.

Police say Schroeder, Osorio and a third student, Edwin Snead, ignored at least eight requests from the arresting officer, James Smith, to leave the parking lot where the snow cave was located. They were argumentative and rude as soon as Smith arrived, Framingham police spokesman Lt. Vincent Alfano said.

Snead told Smith the only reason the officer asked them to leave was because they were white and the officer was black, according to the police report.

"This just shows you the frame of mind these kids were in," Alfano said.

Snead, who was not arrested but was placed in Smith's cruiser during the incident, declined comment yesterday. Snead said Smith let him out of the cruiser and allowed him to drive home.

In an interview Tuesday afternoon, he insisted he and his two friends were about to leave the area when the officer arrested them. Smith, he said, was overly aggressive toward them.

Alfano said a school building and grounds employee notified police the students were building the snow cave, which had standing room for six people, according to Snead. Alfano called it a safety hazard and said police and school officials would have been negligent if they did not act.

"We're mandated to act on that. That's a clear safety hazard," he said.

A public works crew dismantled the cave after a firefighter inspected it to make sure no one else was inside.

David Copithorne, Snead's assistant Boy Scout master, said the Framingham High senior has extensive experience building snow caves. Snead is an Eagle Scout and hopes to attend the Air Force Academy next year.

"The kid knows what he's doing. This kid is a crackerjack," he said.
 

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fscpd907";p="54476 said:
David Copithorne, Snead's assistant Boy Scout master, said the Framingham High senior has extensive experience building snow caves. Snead is an Eagle Scout and hopes to attend the Air Force Academy next year. "The kid knows what he's doing. This kid is a crackerjack," he said.
Snead was the kid who was let go, although it's not apparent why. He's lucky though, because I doubt the Air Force Academy would have him with a discon or criminal trespass on his record.
 

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"Snead told Smith that the only reason the officer asked them to leave was because they were white and the officer was black ...." WHAAA !!??

Well that's a switch, usually its the other way around. Eight requests to leave was about seven requests too many. And I can see the headlines now if Off. Smith didn't do anything, and the 25 ft high snowmound (that would weigh how many pounds ?) collapsed. Ohhh ! Wait , Snead is an " crackerjack " expert at building snow caves !
 

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There is 1 detail these puss faced little snotwads fail to realize.
That officer would be selling fries along with that burger of yours and the town of Framingham
would be paying about $10,000,000 to each family should that officer have turned a blind eye,
and subsequently said "fort" collapsed and one or more of said cherubs perish along the way....

G. Damn people are so remarkably dimwitted and self-involved...
 

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Gotta love the media, when it first aired I remember hearing the intro "kids arrested for building a snow fort".......how about a title like "Immature 18 year olds playing in the snow, arrested for being a$$ holes and not listening the first time"......You gotta wonder about some of these parents .....18 years old and these kids are still feeding from the nipple.
 

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what I find interesting about this story is the comments before the court appearance and the lack of comments after the court appearance. Could it be because the charges are gonna stick. As far as the Eagle Scout grumbling the kid got a break and didn't get hooked, but thats not enough he has to complain about the fact he didn't get arrested. I didn't know they gave merit badges for building snow forts the scouts must have changed since I was a kid. Being told to leave 8 times is a luxury I wouldn't have given. Sounds like the PO was trying to be nice guy, and the kids forgot to listen to instructions.
 

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I hope those kids don't get let off... A cop tells you to do something, you do it. If he spent 15 minutes pleading with these kids, thats 14 minutes too long.
 

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A Scout is Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean, and Reverent.

Looks to me like he forgot some

and WTF extensive experience building snow caves...granted I'm no eagle scout, but I never got extensive experience building snow forts or caves in the Scouts...

How it could have been:
Two Teens killed after snow fort collapses
By David McLaughlin / News Staff Writer
Wednesday, January 26, 2005

FRAMINGHAM -- Police arrested Edwin Snead, 17 on charges of involuntary manslaughter after a snow fort he and his two friends built, collapsed killing the other two teens.

An Eagle Scout, Snead, should have known better due to his extensive experince gained in the Scouts building snow forts. Due to this the parrents of his two friends are asking that the charges be upgraded to murder with special circumstnace.
 

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Not only colapse, but every year you hear of kids getting run over by plows when they're behind/hunder these "forts".
They were always fun, and the best place to make them was from the premade piles by the plows.
This is a simple case of an officer doing right, and the kids doing wrong. But naturaly the [email protected]$$ parents make it into a "aw, they were just being kids" scene.
 

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Snow fort builders facing prison time
By Norman Miller / Daily News Staff
Wednesday, May 4, 2005

FRAMINGHAM -- Two Framingham High seniors arrested in January after they were ordered off high school property because they were building a snow fort were found guilty yesterday of trespassing.

Jenna Schroeder and Jason Osorio, both 18, now face a maximum of 30 days in jail after the two-day trial in Framingham District Court. The jury of three men and three women deliberated for about three hours before they reached a verdict.

Judge Douglas Stoddart will sentence the pair May 16. Although punishable by a maximum of 30 days in jail, according to Massachusetts General Law, an offender can also face a fine less than $100 and probation.

Neither Schroeder nor Osorio commented after the trial. Schroeder's attorney, Michael J. Heineman, also declined to comment. Osorio's lawyer, Melvin Norris, was not present during the verdict due to a hearing in federal court in Boston.

The pair were arrested Jan. 25 when police ordered them to leave the high school grounds while they were building a fort in a large pile of snow. The school was closed for the day due to the weather.

The teens claimed they were about to leave when they were arrested. Police said the pair were uncooperative and refused to leave after repeated requests.

During closing statements, both defense attorneys tried to convince the jury the arrests stemmed from the arresting officer, James Smith, getting angry at the "smart ass" teens.

Prosecutor Deb Bercovitch argued it was a clear-cut case -- two people told to leave the property who did not, so they were arrested.

Heineman questioned Smith's truthfulness in his closing statement.

"His credibility is something I'm going to ask you to look closely at," said Heineman. "Officer Smith tells a story that doesn't add up -- that doesn't make sense."

Heineman said Smith originally put a third teen, Edwin Snead, in his cruiser, but never arrested him. The lawyer said Smith grew angry at Schroeder when she asked first why Snead was put in the cruiser, and then asked for his name and badge number.

"Officer Smith never gave a reason -- why didn't he give a reason?" said Heineman. "Because being a smart ass is not a good answer. The evidence shows that Officer Smith was trying to bully and scare these kids."

He said Schroeder, Osorio and Snead were just having a fun day, building a snow fort in the large pile of snow. He said Schroeder's questioning of Smith led to the arrest.

"I would suggest the only crime Jenna broke that day, if it's a crime, is she stood up and asked a police officer his name and badge number," said Heineman. "She didn't cower. She didn't flee. She stood up for a friend. I would suggest the world needs more people like Jenna."

Norris, representing Osorio, said Smith had no right to arrest his client.

"Jason is a student at Framingham High School. Jason was at the Framingham High School. Jason had every right to be at the Framingham High School," Norris said. "The teenagers in this case are telling the truth about the facts of the case.

"Why would an officer exaggerate what happened," Norris continued. "Like all of us, he has a job. Everyone wants to be promoted, wants to get ahead."

Bercovitch told the jury the students had ignored an earlier order from Assistant Superintendent Ed Torti to leave the school grounds, and they did not, which required the police to be called.

"Officer Smith was there on behalf of the town of Framingham and the ground department of the public schools," said Bercovitch. "He (Smith) told you he begged and pleaded for them to leave for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, he was fed up. There's no argument, he was fed up, but is it reasonable to believe that it was just in the last minute he asked them to leave. I would suggest it was not."

Not only was Smith frustrated, Bercovitch said, but so were the defendants, who would not leave.

"That's all this case is about," she said. "Officer Smith has the authority to ask them to leave, he asked them to leave, they didn't leave, and he arrested them."

Also yesterday, both Schroeder and Osorio testified, while Smith was called as a rebuttal witness twice. Smith, Officer Benedetto Ottaviani, Torti and Snead were among those who testified Monday.

Schroeder testified that she was heading to her car when Smith arrested her. She said she even had her keys out ready to drive off.

"Officer Smith said, 'That's it,' and he threw me against the car," said Schroeder. "He yelled at me and said grow up."

Bercovitch asked Schroeder if she was mad when everything was happening, but she said she was more shocked and scared than angry. Bercovitch asked Schroeder why she did not call for help.

"You were scared? You didn't leave, did you? Did you call Edwin's mother? Did you call your mother? Did you call Jason's mother?" asked Bercovitch. "You were scared, but you went up to Officer Smith and questioned him?"

Schroeder said she was worried for Snead, who was later released from the cruiser and left before the arrests, and upset that Smith would not answer her questions.

At one point, Bercovitch looked at Schroeder's key chain and pointed out one that said "Property of Princess."

"Do you consider yourself a princess? Were you upset how he was treating you?" Bercovitch asked. The judge did not allow an answer to either question.

Later in the trial, Osorio said he was never told by anyone he should leave the snow fort before Smith came. He said he had heard someone had stopped and spoke to Snead, but he was not involved in the conversation.

Later, Osorio said he heard Smith berating Snead.

"I heard Officer Smith ask Edwin his name and where he lived," said Osorio. "I heard him ask if he (Snead) was a wise ass or trying to be smart by what he was doing at the
 

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Teens in snow fort felt their case was strong
By Norman Miller / Daily News Staff
Thursday, May 5, 2005

FRAMINGHAM -- Jason Osorio said he knew he and friend Jenna Schroeder could be convicted when they fought their January trespassing arrest for building a snow fort at the high school, but he said he wanted the truth to come out.

That the trespassing charge even made it past the early stages of court proceedings is a surprise to a pair of defense attorneys who often work in Framingham District Court.

"There was a point where I wanted to take the CWOF (continued without a finding), but I just decided to go for it," said Osorio, 18, a Framingham High School senior.



Osorio and Schroeder, who is also an 18-year-old student at FHS, were arrested on Jan. 25 for trespassing at the high school. The pair, along with friend Edwin Snead, had built a giant fort out of a pile of snow.

The pair claimed at the two-day trial this week that they were not given any notice, and were arrested by an overzealous police officer. Prosecutors claimed the pair were given ample notice to leave, and the police had no choice but to arrest them.

On Tuesday after the trial and three days of deliberations, the jury found the pair guilty. They will be sentenced on May 16.

Local defense attorneys had split opinions about the verdict.

"I thought it was shocking," said Donna Paruti of Framingham. "I thought it would have been a not guilty, but of course I'm defense oriented. The fact that they were both Framingham High students leads me to believe they would have the rights to be on school grounds."

But fellow defense lawyer Darius Arbabi of Framingham said it appeared the verdict was right, based on the letter of the law.

"If you don't leave, you're subject to arrest," said Arbabi. "I certainly give great credit to youthful exuberance. They were feeling wounded by the process, and it's not surprising to me they were to trying to exert their rights. It's sad, unfortunate, but apparently the jury was listening to the facts."

Both attorneys said they would have recommended the teens take an offer of a continuance without a finding. The case would have been filed, and if the defendants did not get into trouble for a certain amount of time, there would be no record of the case for anyone to see.

"I don't know if they thought they had a slam-dunk case where they wanted to make a point -- that they were really innocent and they weren't going to take anything less than a not guilty," Paruti said. "They must have felt they really weren't guilty."

Arbabi said, "In life, even a young life, the decisions one makes can have long-term consequences. I think it's sad these kids have a criminal record, but I'm not blaming the police or the judge or the prosecutor, but there it is.

"I think they (the district attorney's office) feel it's regrettable it had to get to that point, but it's the job of the prosecutor to defend the law. (Prosecutor) Deb Bercovitch is a wonderful, talented, experienced prosecutor, but I don't think she liked doing it."

Melvin Norris, Osorio's lawyer, said he was disappointed with the verdict. He said he has not spoken with his client about an appeal, but said the decision to go to trial was the teen's.

"Mr. Osorio maintained his innocence, and wanted his day in court," said Norris. "We're looking forward to the judge taking into consideration the age of the defendants, and the fact that this is their first brush with the law."

Under state law, trespassing can bring a maximum sentence of 30 days in jail, as well as a fine.

Paruti and Arbabi said there is almost no way the two teens will see jail time.

"Frankly, I think there's no likelihood of jail, or even suspended jail time," Arbabi said.

No matter what happens, Osorio said he did nothing wrong and does not regret making the snow fort.

"No one wants to be arrested, but I have no problem having one of the greatest accomplishments of my life being building a snow fort that could fit six people standing."
 

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Hope this little "princess" never needs officer Smith or any other cops to rescue her from domestic violence/MVA/etc..............

These young "adults" today have NO concept of responsibility
 

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Hope this little "princess" never needs officer Smith or any other cops to rescue her from domestic violence/MVA/etc..............

These young "adults" today have NO concept of responsibility
 
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