Grad cap decoration mistaken for bomb


MIAMI (CNN Newsource) — Besides being done with school, one of the most exciting parts of graduating college is decorating your cap — traditionally called a mortar board.

One student at Florida International University’s graduation didn’t go quite as planned when police thought his cap had a bomb attached.

“I thought I’d try something different,” Can Cevik, the student, said. “It wasn’t intended to be harmful in any way. This is a small creative project that I just wanted to show off at graduation.”

It was a graduation ceremony he’ll never forget.

But Cevik said it was the moments before commencement that left a lasting memory — and it’s all thanks to his custom graduation cap.

“I decorated it with an arduino, which is sort of like a small computer that you can program,” he said.

The FIU computer engineering major put a little creativity into his cap, using his coding skills to program that mini computer to spell out “FIU 2019”.

But when he walked up to the ocean bank convocation center monday evening, campus cops thought he was trying to go out with a bang.

“He tells me to put it on the floor and slowly back away from it,” Cevik said.

They also grabbed his phone and asked him to empty his pockets.

The FIU police say the exposed wires and battery raised a few red flags.

And even though it was harmless, the officer at the entrance was not taking any chances.

“While that seems very innocent and looks very innocent, it also has the potential to scare people,” FIU Police Captain Delrish Moss said. “Police officers spotted it and took necessary precautions.”

Luckily it didn’t take long for police to figure it all out and it didn’t delay the ceremony.

Cevic was only held up for about 20 minutes.

He was able to walk as scheduled wearing a replacement cap.

“I honestly think I was being a bit too naive,” Cevic said. “I probably should have seen that considering the current political climate we are in.”

Unfortunately, police weren’t able to give back his custom cap.

But he says after five years of hard work, getting his degree is all that matters, and nothing could put a damper on his graduation day — not even a brief bomb scare.

“A couple hours before graduation, I just taped it right on my cap, and I guess that’s what made it look a bit sketchy,” he said. “I probably won’t bring anything like this to a graduation or any other public event again.”

Cevik said after that ordeal, his focus now is on finding a job.

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