Attorney Phil Dilucente said the student, David Schaffner III, was being punished because he "did the right thing," the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported Wednesday.
Schaffner, 16, forget he had a pocketknife when he went to a Fox Chapel high school football game Friday, Dilucente said. When he saw a sign stating the school's no-weapons policy, the teen turned the knife over a security guard. The guard gave the knife to the school principal, who suspended Schaffner for 10 days.
The school district could expel him.
"Instead of saying good job to him for being forthright and doing the right thing, they decided to make it into a federal case," Dilucente said. "He voluntarily turned it in, did the right thing -- and he's now being punished."
The attorney said he was in discussion with school officials to end Schaffner's suspension as soon as possible.