Court denies underground editor’s appeal

OREGON ‘ A case involving the editor of an underground newspaper that began in 1997 ended this October, and it is not good news for student-press rights.

The Oregon Supreme Court denied Chris Pangle’s appeal. Jonathan Hoffman, Pangle’s attorney, filed the petition for review claiming school officials violated Pangle’s free-speech rights when they expelled him for distributing copies of OUTSIDE! to his fellow students.

Pangle was a junior at Mountain View High School when he was expelled for distributing the unauthorized publication, which was written off campus and circulated outside of class.

OUTSIDE! included how-to articles that discussed methods of exploding a toilet and taking over the school’s intercom system.

The Oregon Court of Appeals ruled in 2000 that Pangle was rightfully disciplined because he ‘advocated specific methods for causing personal injury, property damage and the disruption of school activities.’

Hoffman replied by claiming the action was ‘based solely upon Pangle’s writing and distribution of a non-school-sponsored publication’ that was not disruptive.