Wake County high school student freed from jail


Selina Garcia, 17, has been at the Wake County Detention Center for three weeks because she was in the foster care system and had no place to go.

Garcia's case was the subject of a protest at a Wake County School Board meeting earlier this month. Supporters say she is an example of how zero-tolerance policies involving minor school incidents lead to arrests, juvenile detention referrals and jail.

Click here to read more about the protest

Wednesday, members of the student advocacy group NC HEAT were in court supporting Garcia and protesting that the system sent her to jail rather than get her the help she needs.

Garcia's situation is changing. At the court hearing, a representative for Wake County Human Services told a judge that they have found a group home for Garcia in High Point.

The Southeast Raleigh High School student admitted to the charges against her for the fight on the bus. She said she has anger issues as a result of years in the foster system, but said she wants to change and set a better example for fellow foster kids.

"I don't want them in the same path. I don't want to see other kids in this, so I really , I'm just ready to make a change," said Garcia.

A woman who identified herself as Garcia's aunt was also in court Wednesday. She said she was not notified the teen was in jail and said she wants to have custody. That would have to be approved by the courts.

Garcia reportedly doesn't want to go to the group home in High Point. Wake officials said they are looking at other options. In the meantime, it's unclear whether Garcia will be able to continue attending Southeast Raleigh High and be able to graduate this spring after missing so much school.

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