The young couple stood in front of their high school to take the prom picture they won't be able to take on June 4th.
James Tate will not be able to attend his senior dance. His crime is in the way he asked his date.
"I feel like I did it to make her feel special and I accomplished that," Tate said.
James hand-cut 45-letters out of cardboard and taped them to the front of the Shelton High School building spelling out: "Sonali Rodrigues, will you go to prom with me? HMU - Tate"
HMU stands for "hit me up".
It was a huge hit.
"I thought it was cute, I don't know, I liked it, and I said 'Yes'," Rodrigues said.
As punishment, James was slapped with a 1-day suspension and barred from attending the prom.
Two of his friends who helped him tape up the letters have also been suspended and banned from the prom.
Never did James imagine that the letters he taped up would turn into scarlet letters.
"I think it was just really cute and romantic and he shouldn't get in trouble for it," a fellow female student said.
"It's probably the most creative idea I've seen," said another male student.
Eyewitness News has not yet received a comment from the school.
Many other students say that they are afraid to stand up for James because they do not want to get banned from the prom too.
"I don't want to say anything and get myself in trouble," Rodrigues said.
"I thought it was innocent all along," Tate said.
James Tate, who is an AP scholar and athlete, said that he will dress up on June 4th, take formal photos with his friend Sonali, and then wait for the prom to end and then join his friends at the after parties.
Tate says he was told that posting the message constituted trespassing and posed a safety risk.