Three middle schoolers vandalize Roane County elementary school

Three middle schoolers vandalize Roane County elementary school

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Police said in the school office, items were strewn about as if it had been completely turned over. Police said in the school office, items were strewn about as if it had been completely turned over.

By ALEXIS ZOTOS
6 News Reporter

ROCKWOOD (WATE) - Three middle schoolers are facing felony vandalism charges for causing damage to several classrooms in a Rockwood elementary school.

Rockwood police responded to Ridge View Elementary School around 1 a.m. Friday after an alarm was tripped at the school.

When they arrived, they found an open door and upon entering heard another door slam shut.

The vandals targeted several different rooms, throwing paint on the floor and painting graffiti and profanity on smartboards.

They also damaged a number of computers and laptops in the school's computer office.

Police said in the school office, items were strewn about as if it had been completely turned over

"It didn't look like an effort to steal, it was just an effort to trash so that's usually an indication that it was someone just in for a prank," said Roane County superintendent Gary Aytes.

But Aytes says with the amount of damage, to computers, iPads and the school's smart boards, this was far from a joke.

"It's really not a prank that's a felony, that's vandalism and they destroyed enough property that it would be a felony," Aytes said.

Officers located the three juvenile suspects and took them into custody. They were all later released into the custody of their parents.

The trio faces charges of felony vandalism and burglary.

When teachers and members of the school's summer program arrived in the morning, the mess was overwhelming.

"It was pretty rough, there was paint every where, writing on the walls and the boards," said Larissa Henderson, who works for the school's summer program.

School officials are still assessing the damage but police say it could be upwards of $10,000.

"For all that stuff to be damaged, for some kids that's the only time they get to play on computers and see stuff like that and for stuff to get ruined, it just breaks my heart," Henderson said.

Teachers, staff, parents and students all volunteered to clean up the school on Friday morning.

"They stated showing up around 7:00 to help clean," Aytes said. "That's always encouraging when the community will come out and help get things back in order as quickly as we can."

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