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This time, Plant High prank expected to bring charges

TAMPA — Getting inside Plant High School on Thursday morning was more challenging than usual.

Overnight, culprits injected a foaming epoxy sealant into the locks of 30 exterior doors — the second stunt there this week.

School officials aren't laughing.

They're working with police and plan to offer a reward for information leading to an arrest.

"This is a crime," said district spokeswoman Linda Cobbe. "It's vandalism, it's not a prank."

Earlier this week, Tampa police descended on the school after getting reports of a large group of people on campus late at night. It turned out to be 20 Plant High seniors who had plans to try to "Saran Wrap" the school.

There was no damage, so the students did not face charges. The school took no additional disciplinary actions.

The doors are another matter.

The locks must be replaced, said Cobbe, and "It's going to be costly."

Tampa police spokeswoman Andrea Davis said officers are following up on several leads.

Early Wednesday, authorities descended on Osceola Fundamental High School in Seminole and discovered students inside. They had used a key to get inside and tried to line the hallways with 4,000 cups of water.

At least seven teenagers, including two juveniles, were arrested on charges of trespassing, a misdemeanor.

Cobbe said the Hillsborough School District assumes the Plant High culprits were students. Most of the seniors have finished their classes.

If the offenders turn out to be seniors, the school expects to issue its own punishment: no participation in the graduation ceremony.

Jodie Tillman can be reached at jtillman@sptimes.com or (813) 226-3374.

This time, Plant High prank expected to bring charges 05/26/11 [Last modified: Friday, May 27, 2011 12:22am]
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