Uniontown teen faces felony charge for school vandalism
A Fayette County teenager who posted a cellphone video of himself trashing his school's restroom faces a felony charge of criminal mischief, according to Uniontown police.
Posted April 24 on YouTube, the “Toilet Paper Madness” video depicts a young male narrating as he fills a commode and sink with toilet paper and paper towels at Lafayette Elementary-Middle School in Uniontown Area School District.
“This is how you destroy a bathroom stall in school,” the teen says in the video, chuckling as he flushes the first round of paper and then refills the toilet with more paper before exiting the stall.
“That's how you do it,” the teen says, panning the camera on the toilet and sink. “Ruined that stall.”
The teen's face is not shown in the 2 1⁄2-minute video.
But school officials identified him by his shoes and voice, said Mike Garrow, a Uniontown police officer assigned to the district.
“Plus, he admitted it,” Garrow said.
When confronted, the teen told school officials, “That was a long time ago,” according to a police report.
In the comments section under the video, the teen bragged that he had been suspended for a week.
That suspension has since been followed up with juvenile charges of criminal mischief, institutional vandalism and disorderly conduct, which Garrow said he filed on Tuesday.
Garrow did not identify the teen because he is a juvenile. He said the criminal mischief charge has been graded as a felony.
Cost for the cleanup, including paper replacement and manpower hours, is estimated at $500.
“It wasn't a smart thing to do,” said Lt. Tom Kolencik of Uniontown police, regarding the teen's decision to post the video to YouTube. “But it wasn't a smart thing to go into a bathroom and destroy it, either.”
Liz Zemba is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-601-2166 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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