Mom Arrested for Cheering Too Loud at Daughter's Graduation

By Guest Writer on June 07, 2012 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Guest post by Jennifer K. Halford, Esq.

You should celebrate when your child graduates from high school. But don't celebrate too much if it is from South Florence High School.

South Carolina mom Shannon Cooper was arrested last Saturday for cheering too loudly at her daughter's graduation ceremony.

"It all seems like a bad dream, a nightmare of what was to be one of the happiest days of our lives. I cheered for my baby and I got the cuffs." Cooper told MSNBC.

Cooper doesn't think that she acted any differently than the other families did when their graduates' names were announced.

But the police said it was disorderly conduct. Police may arrest someone for disorderly conduct when a person is behaving in a disruptive manner, but presents no serious public danger.

"The school district made an announcement and sent out letters to all of the parents for everyone to be as orderly as they can during the ceremony and so on and so forth. That was the rule." Florence Police Chief Anson Shells told

Disorderly conduct is a misdemeanor in South Carolina. South Carolina law provides that a conviction can result in a fine up to one hundred dollars or imprisoned up to thirty days.

Cooper was escorted by police away from the ceremony and booked in Florence County Detention Center. She spent the rest of the ceremony and several more hours there until posting a $225 bond.

Cooper's daughter didn't even know her mom was being arrested for cheering until her friends told her. "Yesterday can't be replaced... My mama went to jail on my graduation day," Iesha told ABC affiliate WPDE-TV .

Jennifer K. Halford is an attorney whose practice focuses on business law and estate planning. She is also a professor at California State University, Chico, where she teaches Entrepreneurial Law.

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