With parents at odds with one another, 11<sup>th</sup> grade Willis High School honor student Diane Tran sought to juggle two jobs, maintain her grades, and keep up her younger brother and sister while her parents were away figuring it all out.
Judge Moriarty, a Sherlock Holmes worthy adversary, nipped that plan in the bud when he put the young woman in the slammer for 24 hours, and now the public is outraged that some man thought the best way to discipline a law-abiding hard-worker was to force her to spend the night with criminals who do anything but.
Outrage is so great it has inspired a fundraising effort that rivals some politicians on the circuit this upcoming November, with $40,000 already raised by the Louisiana Children's Education Alliance website.
And it's all likely to go to much better use than any political advertising being seen of late.
And who can blame Tran's supporters for their outrage, despite the fact that she has exceeded the state's 10-day absence limit within a six-month period?
This is a young woman subjected to a place overnight that is considered "hard-core" compared to the dry-cleaning business and wedding planner atmospheres where she works.
And just who was home with her siblings while she was in jail?
To add insult to injury, Moriarty (he really is living up to that name) also tacked on a $100 fine to go with Diane Tran's overnight visit to the gray bar motel, according to Fox News.
KHOU 11 reported that Moriarty felt that if he "let one [high school student] run loose, what are you going to do with the rest of them?" And he's got a point, of course, as there is a truancy law for a reason: to keep kids in school. However, surely the school was aware that this particular student had family problems at home that necessitated she be shown some compassion rather than a boot to the butt. Right?
After all, the goal is to keep kids in school like honor student Diane Tran. And sending them to jail and fining them isn't the way to set a suffering girl straight. It doesn't even appear to be working for many of the criminals who go there.