Powhatan students face no charges in senior prank that harmed goat at school

Published: May. 1, 2023 at 4:57 PM EDT
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POWHATAN COUNTY, Va. (WWBT) -The administration at Powhatan High School has chosen not to press charges against multiple students involved in a senior prank that resulted in a goat getting injured and damages throughout the school building.

Powhatan County Public Schools Superintendent Beth Teigen says on Tuesday, April 25, Powhatan High School seniors entered the building after hours to pull a senior prank. The students requested staff for approved entry to conduct specific, minor activities (such as rearranging chairs, putting sticky notes on walls, silly string and changing marquee signs and posters with Class of ‘23 slogans) while in the building.

After the initial entry, Teigen says the students dumped sand in the hallways, trashed a few classrooms and the library, spray painted (with temporary paint and hair color) walls, dismantled electrical systems, activated fire extinguishers and a science shower, moved large appliances and removed a goat from the veterinary science lab. She says the damage estimates don’t go over $2,500.

A veterinarian assessed the animal and recommended pen rest to address stress and possible muscle strain.

The administration has spent several days investigating to determine students’ level of involvement and disciplinary or legal consequences. Teigen says the students may be suspended for up to 10 days and have senior trips, proms and even graduation taken away from them to be earned back through school-based community service. The administration will be meeting with students and notifying families Tuesday.

The administration talked with law enforcement, and at this time, they are not currently recommending any legal charges for the students involved. Division leadership is also reviewing the activities, staff actions, procedures, and policies that can be addressed and improved.