25-Year-Old Texan Posed as High Schooler to Play Basketball
He enrolled as a freshman and got away with it the entire year, until just a few weeks ago when someone recognized him.
The Dallas ISD is currently investigating one of their students who they were told was Rashun Richardson. Turns out Rashun is actually 25-year-old Sidney Bouvier Gilstrap-Portley. He enrolled at Hillcrest High School over in Dallas. How was he able to enroll in a high school at that age?
Sidney claimed to be from Houston and he was displaced because of Hurricane Harvey. DISD told WFAA that when a student enrolls and claims they are homeless or an evacuee due to a natural disaster, federal law exempts them from requiring documents they might not have. A district spokesperson said Gilstrap-Portley may have provided as little as just immunization records and proof of a physical.
Sidney originally enrolled in Skyline High School in August and re-enrolled at Hillcrest two months later. Sidney legally graduated from North Mesquite High School in 2011 and it looks like he wanted to go back to play basketball. Hillcrest actually made the playoffs this year but was knocked out in the first round. “Rashun Richardson” scored 17 points for the team.
Basketball is actually what got Sidney busted. His former basketball coach actually spotted him in highlights and noticed that it was his former player. Sidney hadn't shown up to class since April 25 and was just booked into the Dallas County Jail on Friday. He was charged with tampering of government records and has since been released.
The school district released this statement below on the incident.
The safety of our students at Hillcrest High School is our top priority. When issues of concern occur we feel it is important to share them with you, so you are aware of the facts.
We recently became aware of a student enrolled at our school under false pretenses claiming to be a displaced Hurricane Harvey victim. After learning about this situation, we immediately notified district and local authorities and necessary actions have been taken.
We believe it is absolutely essential that every young person, especially in times of great difficulty, feels safe and secure, and that was the guiding principal when we were welcoming students displaced by the hurricane. This is a unique situation that shows us areas that need improving when we open our doors to students in times of need. Safety is always our top priority, and we are reviewing our policies to strengthen district efforts while still helping those who are in need.
Thank you for your continued support of Hillcrest High School. If you have questions or concerns, feel free to contact us at the main office (972) 502-6800."