Damage from Crispus Attucks prank includes lost student records


INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) - Eyewitness News has learned the damage done to an IPS high school in the name of a senior prank is worse than first thought.

The damages at Crispus Attucks High School now include a break-in and the possible loss of student records. IPS denied our request to go inside the school and see the damage for ourselves. A spokesperson said the building is still the crime scene of an active police investigation.

Clean up crews worked additional hours cleaning up vandalized areas before Thursday night's graduation ceremonies. Hours before, graduates and guests filed into the school, a source says more damage was discovered in a seldom-used area of the building. Investigators believe it is also the result of a senior prank that went wrong.

More than 20 graduating seniors and adults were in the school Tuesday night. They wrote on walls with chalk, scattered papers and, according to a source, caused significant costly damage. A fire extinguisher was sprayed across a basketball court. The wooden floor may have to be refinished.

Food, stolen from a food pantry for low-income students and families, was smeared across floors and carpeting requiring an extensive clean-up. Perhaps most concerning, an office was broken into, irreplaceable personal student records were thrown throughout the building and outside. Some of the records were lost.

IPS identified about two dozen seniors seen in personal photos and on security cameras. Administrators barred them from school property and the graduating ceremony. Some donned their caps and gowns and stood outside while classmates received their diplomas, recognition and applause. The students denied doing any actual damage to the school building.

IPS is not speculating on the cost of the cleanup and repairs, which are likely to total in thousands of dollars. When discussing the incident and punishments Thursday, spokesperson Carrie Cline-Black said the district is not pursuing criminal charges against the teens.

"We do want to make sure students can go on to be productive students," she explained. "We don't want to do anything that's going to be a black mark on their transcript or permanent record."

IPS says students will still get their diplomas after they participate in a school beautification project.