Bartow, Florida -- Kiera Wilmot will soon be returning to a life that was once normal for her among her friends, teachers and peers at Bartow High School. Wilmot's attorney said on Wednesday that the Polk County School District will not be expelling the 16-year-old.
Wilmot was suspended from the school for 10 days following an incident where she brought what was described as a "bottle bomb" that went off on campus back in April.
No one was hurt when the tiny, 8-ounce water bottle's cap popped off and began billowing smoke, and there was also no damage done to the school. However, she was arrested and faced felony charges of discharging a weapon on school grounds and discharging a destructive device -- along with possible adult felony charges from the State Attorney's Office.
Following her suspension, Wilmot was forced to go back to class at the Bill Duncan Opportunity Center -- an alternative high school for students with behavior problems -- while the school board awaited the State Attorney's decision on whether they would pursue any criminal charges.
During that time, Wilmot received national support following her arrest and suspension which included a petition on Change.org that received over 194,000 signatures calling for the charges to be dropped. Wilmot's own principal called her an exemplary student who is interested in robotics, science, and plays cello in the high school band.
Wilmot told 10 News the last couple of weeks have been hard on her.
"There are people teasing me, calling me a terrorist," the tiny teen also said during a news conference with her family and lawyer in Lakeland.
Finally on May 16, the State Attorney's Office decided not to pursue any criminal charges against the 16-year-old. Nearly two weeks later, the school board's decided to let her back into Bartow High.
Now that Wilmot will be returning to her school and is cleared of criminal charges, her attorney says the final step is to have her arrest record expunged to remove any harm it would cause for future endeavors. Then she will be able to finally move forward with her life and leave this unfortunate incident behind her.
Wilmot's attorney released the following statement detailing the school district's decision Wednesday:
"On behalf of Kiera Wilmot and her family, I am announcing that Kiera Wilmot will not be expelled from school by the Polk County School District for the incident that occurred on April 22, 2013.
Action taken by the Polk County School District extinguishes the possibility of expulsion and any other discipline beyond the 10-day suspension and the placement of Kiera to an alternative education setting for the remainder of this school year. Kiera is eager to return to her normal school environment at Bartow High School.
Kiera's mother and twin sister are extremely pleased with the decision of the Superintendent John Stewart and his senior staff. They also wish to thank the many caring individuals in this country and those from other countries who have supported Kiera throughout these latest challenges.
Our next important task is to eliminate the harm to Kiera's future by the records created from her arrest by the Bartow Police Department. We are keenly aware of the harm these records can cause, and we are encouraged by the positive response we have received from the State Attorney's Office. Yet we have a distance to go."
You may also like...
Attractive Convict: Woman behind mug shot meme sets the record straight
Dihydrogen Monoxide: April Fools hoax gets radio DJs suspended
Sinkhole Tragedy: Man sleeping in bed swallowed by sinkhole
That's NUTS! Squirrel causes massive outage at Tampa water plant
Out of this world mystery: "Pond circles" form over frozen pond
Faces of Meth: Before and After pictures
Sex tape scandal: Miss Delaware Teen USA resigns
Prostitute Roundup: 78 arrested in online sex sting
Upload error: Lawmakers consider restrictions on posting naked pics online
Neigh! Video shows man brutalizing, having sex with horse
Shake it: Harlem shake - 10 News style...
Sex blog: Tampa area school CFO busted over her dirty sex porn blog *warning, GRAPHIC*
BUSTED: Woman apologizes for flipping off judge *warning, GRAPHIC*
Nasty Nasty Dining: 10 of the nastiest restaurants in Tampa Bay in 2012
Cover Girl: Kate Upton back on the cover of Sports Illustrated
APP-tastic: Download the 10 News app for your iPad
Yowtch! Teen accidentally shoots off his penis, testicle
Bikini Photos: 2012 Hooters International Swimsuit Pageant
Money Mondays: How you can search for unclaimed cash
Sex Offender Mugshots: Look up Florida Sex Offenders here
Bikinis, mud, trucks: The Redneck Yacht Club
Naughty Schoolgirls: Naughty schoolgirl night at Tampa club pictures
Outrageous mug shot galleries...
Strange: Some of the most unusual mug shots we've seen
Notorious Women: Bad girls behind bars
Teachers: Teacher arrest mugshots
Celebrities: The rich and famous have their own booking photos
Jaw droppers: Open mouth mug shots
Laughers: What's so funny mug shots
Prostitutes: Prostitute mug shots
Athletes: Professional athlete mug shots
Porn arrests: Child porn arrest mug shots
Local Mugs: Hillsborough County Mug shots
More unusual mug shots and galleries: 10 News slideshows and galleries