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Student, 17, accused in phony Facebook profile

Victim had testified against teacher

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A Lakeside High School student was charged Monday with creating a fake Facebook page that purported to show another student lied during a teacher's dismissal hearing.



Roger Corey Bonsant, 17, of the 700 block of Riverbend Drive in Martinez, surrendered at the Columbia County Sheriff's Office in Appling, said Capt. Steve Morris. Bonsant was released on $1,100 bond.

Earlier in the day, investigators obtained a warrant for a misdemeanor charge of criminal defamation, alleging that Bonsant set up a fake Facebook page "under another person's name and communicated false information which exposed another person to hatred, contempt and/or ridicule," Morris said.

Investigators pursued the charges after the guardian of 16-year-old Avery Hill filed a complaint with the sheriff's office. The complaint said the fake Facebook page, created after Hill testified during a Board of Education dismissal hearing against Lakeside teacher Margaret Mudrak, made it appear Hill had lied during his testimony.

Columbia County School Superintendent Charles Nagle said that because of threats Hill has been allowed to transfer to another high school in the county. He refused to say which school.

Mudrak, a veteran special education teacher and boys lacrosse coach, was fired after Lakeside officials say she helped her students cheat on tests and illegally changed their federally mandated Individual Education Plans.

Investigators believe Bonsant, with the knowledge of other Lakeside students who are now witnesses in the case, created the page to help Mudrak, Morris said.

Morris said investigators tracked the fake Facebook page to Bonsant after subpoenaing information from Facebook, which in turn led them to subpoena information from Hotmail. With that information, along with the statements of witnesses, investigators searched Bonsant's home, seized five personal computers and filed the defamation charge, Morris said.

In addition to charging Bonsant, the investigation exonerated Hill, Morris said.

"He had nothing to do with this. He had no knowledge before, during or after that this was created," Morris said.

Mudrak has appealed her firing, but a State Board of Education spokesman said no action has been taken yet.

"Hopefully, a lot of this can be brought to closure," Nagle said.

The school system has no plans to take any disciplinary action against Bonsant because the alleged offense took place off school property and when school was not in session, Nagle said.

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Austin Rhodes
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Austin Rhodes 08/10/10 - 07:15 am
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The show IS recorded...and it

The show IS recorded...and it has been for several years now. Give me a specific time when this supposed declaration was made, and I will be happy to look it up for you. As it is I am not going through hours and hours of recorded material to prove something I already know to be true.

If I had said ANYTHING close to what those posters claimed, you would see a lot more than one or two people making vague references about it.

The Metro Spirit piece covered just about everything I said on the air from two months ago...that was why I posted it.

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 08/10/10 - 07:53 am
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Farfromhome wrote: IF Ms.

Farfromhome wrote:

IF Ms. Mudrak changed an IEP without an IEP meeting it would amount to her breaking the law and she should lose her job.

My point about the use of the phrase “illegally changed” in the article above is that if something is illegal, you are subject to loss of civil liberties (civil "rights," if you will) by performing such illegal behavior. Illegal activity results in fines or imprisonment if you are caught. What Mrs. Mudrack did regarding the IEPs has not resulted in fines or imprisonment. It has resulted only in the loss of her job. A job is not a civil right. Loss of a job is not a loss of a right.

Little Lamb
43585
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Little Lamb 08/10/10 - 07:58 am
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Read Between the Lines

Read Between the Lines wrote:

The page was just a mock; something to aggrevate or annoy Hill.

If you pull a prank, sometimes it backfires. If it backfires, you need to stand up and take your punishment. Bonsant has turned himself into authorities. Let's hope he has learned his lesson, has confessed to his God, and intends to lead a new life. In that case, he can plead guilty, take his punishment, and start over a better person. Let us see.

Farfromhome
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Farfromhome 08/10/10 - 08:20 am
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Not to be argumentative or

Not to be argumentative or take away from the heart of this story, but your reasoning is a little flawed. It is a law, thus engaging in behavior that is contrary to that law is illegal behavior right? Read one of the quick references you can get online about IDEIA 2004 and you will understand how that law really works.

Spelunkerman
13
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Spelunkerman 08/10/10 - 08:56 am
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What a unfortunate place to

What a unfortunate place to be when former police officers (AugustaVoter) states that complaints from citizens are not worthy of investigation because they are equivelant to stealing a pack of gum. Of course, if it were your gum being stolen, it may have a higher importance?
AR, you mentioned the article posted in the metro Spirit, which by all accounts was tame in comparison to the tar and feather lashing you let loose on WGAC towards Mr. Hill the day you discovered the site. I would think a public apology to Mr. Hill and the Columbia County School system would be in order, don't you?

dianeb.
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dianeb. 08/10/10 - 09:04 am
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this was just a kid that made

this was just a kid that made a stupid mistake....he's barely seventeen,a good student and a good kid.....why don't u wait until all the story is known before skewering him and throwing him in the fire? i have never seen so much media attention for something like this...and it makes you wonder why? because it brought lot of attention and embarrassment to a situation that was poorly handled from the beginning?

Austin Rhodes
2852
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Austin Rhodes 08/10/10 - 09:11 am
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An APOLOGY? Cavedude...you

An APOLOGY?

Cavedude...you owe me a keyboard if the coffee I just spewed on it (via an involuntary GUFFAW) doesn't drain out...

My comments were on the mark and stand solid. That young man had NO PLACE involved in such an administrative process that had such a bright light shining on it.

As I have said before, fabricated comments about the Mudrak case aside, that this kid would publicly post the things he ADMITTEDLY AND PROUDLY DID POST, shows that:

A. The CCBOE administration is about as disconnected from the real world as they can be.

and

B. That his guardians don't have a clue.

THAT was always the main focus of my commentary, and to say otherwise is pure fantasy.

Little Lamb
43585
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Little Lamb 08/10/10 - 09:39 am
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Some thoughts: Austin Rhodes

Some thoughts: Austin Rhodes visited Avery Hill's real Facebook pages (not the malicious phony site that this news story is about) and was rightly concerned about many of the posts Avery Hill made. Austin Rhodes talked about some of Hill's posts on his radio show as justification for his statements that it was inappropriate for Charles Nagle to have called Avery Hill to the witness stand to testify to what happened in his classroom.

In hindsight, Charles Nagle did not need Avery Hill's testimony to effect the outcome Nagle wanted, so Nagle now says he would not put Hill on the stand if he had to do it over again. But at the time, Nagle was going along with his attorney's advice that they needed everything but the kitchen sink to win their case in the administrative hearing. It is what lawyers do, because they are nervous before any sworn hearing. Nagle says he regrets putting Hill on the stand. But if Nagle had left Hill off the stand and had lost the case, he would be regretting it even more.

Little Lamb
43585
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Little Lamb 08/10/10 - 09:42 am
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Another thought: Avery Hill

Another thought: Avery Hill is in special education. Perhaps there is a valid reason for his classification.

A question for any forumites (or Chronicle reporter): Is Roger Corey Bonsant in special education? Was he last school year?

KingJames
10
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KingJames 08/10/10 - 09:51 am
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Will Margaret Mudrak ever get

Will Margaret Mudrak ever get her job back? Will Avery Hill transfer back to Lakeside? When will Bonsant's trial begin? These questions and more will be answered on the next episode of The Young And The Socially Networked!

Spelunkerman
13
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Spelunkerman 08/10/10 - 09:59 am
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Dianeb. Kids do make stupid

Dianeb. Kids do make stupid mistakes, not doubt about it. But 17 isn't exactly a kid any more.
Austin, I am not completely familiar with the processes involved in terminating educators, nor the subsequent appellate processes that follow. I do understand, through general conversation with educators, that the process is much like an appeal in an actual court case, with both sides having legal representation? Did Ms. Mudrack(sp?) have students testify on her behalf? If so, wouldn't it be logical for the school system to bring forward students as well?
Since you believe the CCBOE administration doesn't have a clue, what would you have done? You have ranted about this for several weeks but rendered no opinion on how you would have handled it?

Sure, I'll buy you a new keyboard, come get it. I'm at 26°13’01.11”N 50°35’05.75”E

dianeb.
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dianeb. 08/10/10 - 10:17 am
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spelunkerman this is not a

spelunkerman
this is not a street smart kid.....so,yes in inexperience he is just a kid.

bettyboop
7
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bettyboop 08/10/10 - 10:30 am
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What all of this boils down

What all of this boils down to is this teacher who devoted her life to teaching was fired and disgraced..............and it smells of politics and dirty dealings and jelousy and stepping on the wrong toes and not kow-towing to the right people and of rotten and decayed fish. Period. And the kid who created the "fake" page in his misplaced intentions to right a wrong....most likely uncovered the truth.

corgimom
26344
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corgimom 08/10/10 - 10:38 am
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THANK GOD that the crime wave

THANK GOD that the crime wave that existed in Columbia County has been stopped! People are shooting each other left and right, sexual abuse is rampant, drugs are everywhere, but citizens can sleep safely in their beds tonight!

montega12
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montega12 08/10/10 - 10:42 am
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im sorry if someone has

im sorry if someone has killed themselves over facebook bullying or anything else THEY ARE A LOSER PERIOD i call it darwins law

montega12
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montega12 08/10/10 - 10:46 am
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no littler lamb the entire

no littler lamb the entire case was this little jerk said she helped the kids cheat to pass a test. NOTE HE IS A DISCIPLINE PROBLEM AND HE WAS THE ONLY WITNESS SAYING SHE DID WHAT SHE DID. the rest of the students testified on her behalf its ccboe politics any teacher knows you do not cause waves and many teacher and principals live in fear of this nutcase boe we have in columbia county

someone777
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someone777 08/10/10 - 10:48 am
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17 is not a kid? From what I

17 is not a kid? From what I understand this boy had just turned 17 and is entering Lakeside as a Junior. When did we as a society start labeling high school students as adults? Last time I checked the number was 18. If you are old enough to be charged with a crime shouldn't you then also be old enough to vote for the people who make the laws and the people who will be but in office that will determine the fate of those who break laws. This is not a violent crime. Would it make a difference if Bonsant was in special ed now or ever or would it just add a new twist. I don't see where this has anything to do with weather or not the teacher kept her job. Hadn't she already lost it. what happened to the days when things like this could be handled by parents and teachers to try and find a resolution?

fontana
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fontana 08/10/10 - 10:52 am
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No doubt someone has friends

No doubt someone has friends in high places.

montega12
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montega12 08/10/10 - 10:57 am
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this is why our schools turn

this is why our schools turn out kids with no common sense you have an extremely dedicated and caring teacher that went above and beyond for her students you get one little punk whose school record would probably reflect a need for an alternative school or better yet YDC and noone cares the teacher had 30 YEARS OF PERFECT EVALUATIONS i guess this explains why ga schools are the lowest ranking schools in america

Little Lamb
43585
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Little Lamb 08/10/10 - 12:03 pm
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If Roger Corey Bonsant had

If Roger Corey Bonsant had posted on his own Facebook page something like this:

I believe that little squirt Avery lied on the witness stand. I know Mrs. Mudrak would never do anything wrong.

then Bonsant would not have been charged with a crime and he would have gotten his point across. But by creating a fake Facebook page to make people believe that Avery himself admitting lying on the witness stand cannot be tolerated. It is deception that can lead to destruction.

lsmith
105
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lsmith 08/10/10 - 12:52 pm
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I really am surprised
Unpublished

I really am surprised Columbia County Sheriff's department spent so much time going to such lengths to find the facebook creator. It seems to me that task should have been borne by Naegle in his own in house investigation.

Little has been said about Avery Hills' disciplinary record which from what I understand classifies him a repeat trouble maker. Perhaps he should be in an enviroment that can properly contain his problem behavior.
And where is Avery Hill's parents in all this. Why are "guardians' involved with his life? Is there something his parents might have done early on that adversely affected his judgement or impaired him physically?
I tire of seeing the traditional family unit disrupted and then offspring are left to relatives or worse to raise them.

urright
462
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urright 08/10/10 - 12:53 pm
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1. 17 is an adult in the

1. 17 is an adult in the great State of Georgia. If 18 were the magic number, why can't we drink until we're 21?

2. The cops do have better things to do, but a crime is a crime. What if it was your kid who was defamed? Wouldn't you want it investigated? Getting a subpoena signed really doesn't take that much time.

dianeb.
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dianeb. 08/10/10 - 01:06 pm
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urright,there is crime and

urright,there is crime and then there is CRIME.....the man that just defrauded his friends and clients of millions of dollars didn't have newsmen coming to his home and filming it.....and he didn't have a news reporter come to the jail and film him being frisked.....do u think that a 17 yr. old charged with a misdemeanor merits that much more attention than the other case..just an example,there are much worse ones out there

urright
462
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urright 08/10/10 - 03:14 pm
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Of course I think all of the

Of course I think all of the media attention is ridiculous. Columbia County has had two babies murdered this year and neither case has gotten any attention. Let a kid say another kid lied about something and it's all over the news for weeks. Our media is not right. If this is all they have to cover, they aren't looking hard enough.

jff
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jff 08/10/10 - 08:17 pm
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lock the punk up. and his

lock the punk up. and his parents

read between the lines
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read between the lines 08/10/10 - 09:46 pm
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Little Lamb!! I saw the

Little Lamb!!

I saw the page, that was ONE status. Bonsant obviously made the page just to irritate Hill. He did not do it to make it appeare that he lied, and that was obvious as well. The status was not what AR and News 12 had in quotes, "“I EVEN LIED TO PROCEED THE PROCESS OF HER TERMINATION," it was more along the lines of "I lied to get that b** fired hahahah!!"...Also, the only lesson he should have learned from this is to not [filtered word] off the wrong people. Lead a new life after making a facebook?

Why would the police put this much time into it? Because the CCBOE was irritated because they wanted to fire mudrak quietly, just like a teacher they fired last year and the year before.

Also, for the record, since when has making a fake facebook been such a big crime? There is no charge that fits what he did, he did not defame Hill, which is the only charge that WOULD fit. If you were to see Avery Hills own facebook page, you would see that the fake one was an imitation or exaggeration.

dianeb.
0
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dianeb. 08/11/10 - 09:16 am
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i would just like barry

i would just like barry paschal to admit he might be a tad biased in this story since his wife is a principal of an elementary school in evans,ga.
at least,preface your stories with that fact, barry, so that people can decide for themselves if you are biased against this kid.

KaTM
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KaTM 08/12/10 - 09:51 pm
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Okay, seriously, it's time to

Okay, seriously, it's time to set some of you straight. As most of you know if you've been reading the blogs and following this story, I'm Ms. Mudrak's daughter. So I actually know what I'm talking about. First of all, someone (we don't know who YET) keeps saying that my mom "illegally changed IEPs. This is not true. It's never been true. That charge was never mentioned in the charge letter nor was it every brought up during the kangaroo trial. Whoever is saying that (we have an idea who) will get slammed with a serious law suit if they don't stop. My mom did change two IEPs at the end of the year but not illegally. We have the documentation stating the procedure of changing IEPs. All you have to do is get permission from all parties, usually the child, the parents, and the administration. For the first IEP, my mom wrote up the necessary papers and sent them to Carney who had a meeting with the parents. Everything was discussed and changed accordingly. The second IEP was approved by the parents and Lisa Hill (director of Special Education) My mom followed the correct procedures outlined by the board of education BEFORE the IEPs were changed. And if any of you want me to scan that page that details all of this information, I will gladly do so. Additionally, my mom has been contacted by reporters from WGAC and asked to give a statement regarding these lies, her attorney told her to "take the high road" right now. My family is sick and tired of people calling my mom a liar and a cheater. She didn't do anything wrong except for step on the toes of a powerful good ole' boy who is currently serving as one of your assistant superintendents. Good luck to all of you with children still in this school system, I feel sorry for you all.

lenab
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lenab 08/12/10 - 11:43 pm
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KaTM Thank you so much

KaTM
Thank you so much for your comments and clearing up something that I have seen repeated in the articles regarding your mother's termination and in reader's comments after these articles. The articles stated that Mrs. Mudrak had illegally changed IEP's. Mrs. Mudrak had been my son's teacher for two years. I had found her to be very professional, always keeping us well informed about our son's progress. Because of my high regard for Mrs. Mudrak, my son and I attended her termination hearing. I never heard any testimony regarding her illegally changing IEP's. I do remember that the school administration's attorney tried to suggest that she wasn't doing a good job at switching to a new folder system that began in September of 2009. Apparently this new folder system was to help keep paperwork for special education students in a specific order to help locate items when needed. Special education students have folders that include not only current IEP's, old IEP's, report cards, samples of work, correspondence from parents, but also results of batteries of tests given by school pyschologist(s) and medical reports which placed the student into special education. These folders can be quite extensive especially at the high school level. During testomony a school district employee who evaluated special education teachers and their progress towards implementing this new system did say that Mrs. Mudrak like many of the teachers were still working on organizing these new folders. I personally keep a similar folder for my son and it is more than 2 inches thick, which is not an easy folder to keep organized. I do hope that any following articles concerning your mother's termination will drop what I think is an erroneous comment about her illegally changing IEPs, or let them show proof, or quote the source giving this information. Please know that your mother is still highly regarded by many in the area for being an excellent, caring, and giving teacher. God bless her and your family.

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