Lets start with what happened first. The penalty in place is harsh for the item he had. Harsher penalties for other offenses are beside the point. You seem to want to punish a child harshly for a small offense and treat them as if they have already committed a much bigger crime. A comparison to adult rules is fair play ... why should we treat children worse than adults? We have an entire juvenile justice system that is designed around treating children differently - and unless they commit an adult crime and get moved into the adult justice system offenses are generally forgiven and sealed once they reach adulthood. A child with a small knife gets sent home ... yet an adult can give up the knife and fly that day? I suppose you have no answer as to why the child should be treated more harshly.