- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
A judge sent two teenage boys home on electronic monitoring Wednesday after they and two other boys were charged in a police investigation of a burglary last weekend at Great Mills High School, where school band members’ property was reported stolen.
St. Mary’s sheriff’s deputies tallied the loss at more than $1,000 from the Saturday afternoon burglary, captured on surveillance video. The thefts occurred, county public schools officials report, while band members were practicing in the cafeteria.
The burglary occurred after the suspects encountered each other near the school’s premises, according to St. Mary’s Assistant State’s Attorney John Pleisse.
“They just sort of ran into each other,” Pleisse said after a detention hearing for two of the four suspects. “One said, ‘Let’s do this,’ and they all went along.”
The surveillance video showed the suspects going into the school at 5:19 p.m. Saturday and checking doors inside the building, before they entered the band room, sheriff’s deputies report from the investigation by Cpl. Kristi Nelson, a school resource officer.
Laptop computers, iPads and cellphones belonging to eight students were taken, the prosecutor said, and sheriff’s deputies report that calculators, money and credit cards also were missing.
A school faculty member reported the incident on Monday, the sheriff’s office reports, and the oldest suspect, a 16-year-old Lexington Park boy who is a junior at the school, was detained overnight before he appeared Wednesday morning in the courtroom of St. Mary’s Circuit Judge Michael J. Stamm.
Stamm told the teenager he could leave home to go to classes at school, unless he is suspended or expelled, and that any violations of the conditions of his release would lead to his further detention at a state juvenile facility until his case is heard in court later this year.
A 13-year-old Great Mills boy attending Spring Ridge Middle School, who had been swimming at the Great Mills pool before he ran into the other suspects prior to the burglary, also was sent home Wednesday on electronic monitoring, the prosecutor said after the court proceeding. Two Lexington Park boys, age 13 and 14, also were charged this week in the case, the prosecutor said, but they were not detained.
Mike Wyant, director of safety and security for St. Mary’s public schools, said the school building was open on Saturday due to several events, and that he did not know whether the band room door was locked.
Staff writer Jesse Yeatman contributed to this report.