by Anna Giles


STOCKTON (CBS13) — Free speech triumphed in a battle between Stockton-area high school students and their administrators.

On Friday, student journalists at Bear Creek High School published an article about a fellow student who works in the porn industry. In early April, the district tried to stop this from happening, but agreed, in the end, the article presents no legal issues.

RELATED: High School Newspaper Battling With District Over Story About Student In Adult Entertainment

The star of the article, Caitlin Fink, spoke with CBS13 about her choice to share her story.

“Adult entertainers aren’t just objects they are actual people. They have feelings, they have goals they have motivation,” Fink said.

Fink left home for good last News Year’s Eve. Now she pays her own rent, utilities, and phone bill. She discovered the porn industry could help, once making hundreds of dollars within a few hours.

“When people found out I was doing that, they assumed all these things about me and I was like, ‘oh no that’s not true,’” Fink said.

That’s why she agreed to do an interview with her school paper, The Bruin Voice. Once the district got wind of that, they demanded to preview the article. When the student newspaper refused, a battled started that included threats of job loss and shutting down the article down.

READ THE BRUIN VOICE’S ARTICLE HERE

“I feel like the district sees it as a taboo thing that should be swept under the rug but its really not a taboo topic. It’s just a topic that people don’t like to talk about because it makes them feel uncomfortable,” Fink said.

RELATED: District Allowing Newspaper To Publish Controversial Article About Student In Porn

The district released a statement Friday saying it was “pleased that the process we have been engaged in regarding the Bear Creek High School newspaper has resulted in an article that meets legal requirements.”

Swipe through photos Fink shared with CBS13:

Bear Creek High School teacher Kathi Duffel.

Kathi Duffel, who has run The Bruin Voice for decades, still feels her job is at risk.

“I think this district has shown in the past it can be very retaliatory. My attorney sent them a letter yesterday threatening them this is a liability if they choose to go that route,” Duffel said.

Duffel fears her program could be defunded and shut down. She said that’s been threatened by district leaders in the past. CBS13 asked the district about possible punishment and was told they could not comment on personnel matters.

“I am going to stand tall until they kick me out of here,” Duffel said.

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