"Are Those Your Grades? You Can't Do That..."

So said Ally Sheedy to Matthew Broderick around the 2 minute mark of this clip in WarGames, as he hacks into the school’s computer and changes his F to an A.

Meanwhile, in the real world, or in Tallahassee anyway, a student was sentenced to 22 months in the federal pen for much the same thing:

A former Florida A&M student was sentenced Monday to 22 months in prison and three years' supervised release in a case involving unauthorized grade changes at the university, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

He was the second defendant to be sentenced on charges of aggravated identity theft, unauthorized access of a protected computer, conspiracy to commit wire fraud and a substantive count of unauthorized access of a computer. He pleaded guilty on all charges…

There was a little more to it than Broderick’s crime in WarGames…

The three co-defendants caused the grades of about 90 FAMU students to be changed, affecting 650 grades overall, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. About 114 grade changes were failing "F" grades changed to "A" grades, said Karen Rhew, spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney's Office. The three men also caused residency status of certain students to be changed from out-of-state to in-state, reducing the amount of tuition owed by thousands of dollars.

…but don’t forget, Ally Sheedy had her grades changed too. According to a prior Department of Justice press release, the defendants were paid to change grades; presumably Broderick’s character changed Sheedy’s grades simply to impress her. And public high school students don’t pay tuition, so there was no monetary loss for the movie shenanigans vs. the in state/out of state tuition scam, but it has me wondering.

Broderick’s next big movie was Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Is truancy next on the US Attorney’s radar?

[Hat Tip: Sentencing Law & Policy]

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Comments (1) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
Matt-Mueller - July 29, 2009 12:49 PM

Great idea, but will this work over the long run?

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