Jefferson City Man Returns Home After Egypt Arrest

6 years 2 weeks 1 day ago Sunday, November 27 2011 Nov 27, 2011 Sunday, November 27, 2011 7:05:00 PM CST November 27, 2011 in News
By: Stacey Kafka
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JEFFERSON CITY-  The family of 19-year-old Derrik Sweeney have a lot to be thankful for this holiday season.  During his semester in Egypt, Sweeney was arrested for throwing molotov cocktails during a protest in Tahir Square.

These accusations, which Sweeney says are completely false, landed him in an Egyptian prision, where he said he thought might be the place he died.  While in prison him and two other students were told they would be shot if they moved or said anything. 

Although not completely fluent in Arabic, Sweeney said he believes his knowledge of the language probably helped him and the two other prisoners.  "As they would yell orders, I would instantly know what they were saying, while the other guys wouldn't," said Sweeney.

Since he left Egypt a few weeks before the semester ended, him and his mother, Joy, are working with Georgetown to try to figure out if he will get credit for the classwork he completed while at American University Cairo. "It sounds like they are going to help me get some credit from that.  I could maybe do some comparative judicial studies," said Sweeney.

Until his next semester begins in January, Sweeney will spend time with his family and friends at their home in Jefferson City.

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