Hanford teen pays high price for vodka shot

HANFORD, Calif. Like most seniors in his class, Daniel Cervantez, Jr. has his cap and gown all ready for Hanford West High School's graduation.

He says, "I even have all the tickets."

The problem is, he is not allowed to participate in the ceremony.

Last week, Cervantez and two female friends took a shot of vodka at a home off campus during their lunch break. When they returned back to school, Cervantez says one of the girls started boasting about what they had done. School administrators eventually found out. They suspended the three and banned Cervantez and the other senior from participating in any graduation activity.

He says, "But for this large of a punishment to be given to me, I don't think it's right."

Cervantez says he's never been in trouble. He is in the Junior ROTC program and has been a part of the Police Explorers for four years.

Still, school officials say despite a student's good standing, rules are rules. "Sometimes when you make the wrong decision, it outweighs all the good you've done."

Cervantez says walking in his graduation ceremony is not only important for him, but to his father, who dropped out of high school early, before going back and getting his diploma in 2005.

Both father and son say they will continue to fight this. Cervantez already has a petition going with more than 100 supporters.

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