Each year, outgoing high school seniors are inspired to create a senior prank that is even better than years prior. They want to create a high school prank that will go down in the history books at their school. Something to be remembered by. Soon to be separating friends get together at all hours to figure out the details of the best high school prank yet, laughing and enjoying the time planning.
Often times, the high school pranks are harmless. Sometimes they are serious enough to amount to criminal vandalism charges. The problem is that the kids are just that: kids. They are in high school. They don’t think about consequences like the cost of having to change all of the locks at the local high school after putting glue into the doors. They do not think far enough into the future to see the connection of high school prank and felony vandalism charges.
Unfortunately, that is exactly what happened to three kids from La Quinta High School. What they thought was a harmless high school prank turned into felony charges for vandalism and conspiracy. One of the three was also charged with possession of a controlled substance, only adding more trouble to the current charges. Three kids, who had the misfortune of being 18 at the time of the incident, were all charged as adults. They have their whole lives ahead of them to possibly deal with the fall out from this unfortunate lack of maturity and clarity. A fourth boy, who was 17 at the time of the incident, has not yet had charges filed against him.
They can at least be hopeful of the fact that there are defenses to vandalism. To be guilty of vandalism in California, the prosecutor has to prove malicious destruction to someone else’s property. The amount determines the seriousness of the charges: under $400 is a misdemeanor and over $400 is a felony.
If you or a loved one have been charged with vandalism as a result of a high school prank, do not lose hope. Contact the Law Office of Stephanie M. Arrache for a free consultation to discuss the defenses to your case.
To read more about the LQHS high school prank criminal case, click here.