WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- A Pender County family says the school system closed the book on their nephew entering the school system because of an episode from two years ago in California.
"Honestly my life was going downhill ever since I was a little kid,” said Marco Olmeda.
As a 12-year-old Olmeda was expelled from school and faced a number of felony and misdemeanor charges after being caught tagging private and public property with graffiti.
Olmeda’s aunt and uncle decided to move him across the country and into their Pender County home to give the teen a second chance.
"I just wanted to have a change in my life so I wouldn't be a person that's dead or in prison,” said Olmeda.
Samantha Lopez, the teen’s aunt, says her family has welcomed the teen in with open arms but Trask High School and the Pender County School System has closed the door on her nephew due to his previous expulsion in California.
"It kind of made me feel like they didn't want him,” said Samantha Lopez. “I haven't had really any problems with the child. He just needs parental guidance and somebody there to spend time with him and show him hey you can do this."
At home Lopez and her husband have been encouraging to their nephew by taking him bowling and fishing, two things he had never experienced before.
However, if Olmeda isn’t allowed into school by the end of the semester he could be sent back to California to live in a foster home for violating his probation.
"It will help me straighten my life out and I wouldn't be cooped up anymore,” said Olmeda. “I would be able to communicate with people and socialize. I just want to have an education so I can live my life fully.
A Pender County School’s spokeswoman said that she couldn’t tell WWAY why Olmeda isn’t allowed in school because she couldn’t give out student information.
We explained to her that Olmeda was not yet a student, but we still have yet to receive an explanation.