Exploring security measures at AHS in light of a Halloween robbery

LeAnn Liu and Tala Hamadah

Web Editor and Staff Writer

    Halloween: a night of fun where it is perfectly acceptable, in fact, expected, to come home with a sack of goodies from strangers. However, some “trick-or-treaters” decided to use brute force to obtain cameras and water bottles from American High School.

    The morning of November 1, custodians arrived at school only to discover shattered glass at three places: Mr. B.C.’s room, Mr. Amato’s room, and the weight room. In each of the rooms, there was clear evidence that the perpetrators had rummaged around as if they were looking for something. There was no clear evidence, though, who did it. Administrators and Officer Candler do believe it is someone who is at least somewhat acquainted with the school.

    “I personally think it’s someone from here,” said Mr. Reibenschuh. “I think it was somebody who suspects there was something valuable in those classes. Somebody who might have a grudge against the school… What I also suspect is that there are people at this school today who know who did it.”

    Besides theft and petty revenge, it is also suspected that the holiday itself motivated the thieves.

    “On Halloween, people sometimes make poor choices,” said Ms. Barrington. “This is one of those incidents where individuals felt like they could come onto our campus and perpetrate a crime and felt like they would get away with it because it was quite brazen.”

    Halloween for teenagers is often a night of mischief. However, the pranks are usually on a much smaller scale and cause far less harm.

    “There’s usually a prank at a Halloween of some sort, some stupid thing that happens,” said Mr. Reibenschuh.

    Unfortunately, the true motives and identity or identities of the criminals may never be discovered. The school has never caught any offenders in the past mainly due to issues in matching identifying evidence with people.

    “If this person has never been arrested before and they’ve never had their fingerprints taken, we just have a set of fingerprints, we have nothing to match it to,” said Officer Candler.

    Although the school would like to have cameras to make the investigation process easier, the district, which ultimately controls funding for any upgraded security measures, is reluctant. Incidents of such nature are rare at American (this break-in was the first this school year), especially considering how long the school is opened for every day.

Caption: In light of the Halloween break-in, Mr. Musto is working with the district to get lights for the affected areas. “If you’re there at night or in the early morning, it’s not some place that’s got a lot of light falling on it,” said Mr. Musto. “So if somebody’s in a bright light or a visible area they’re less likely to do crime.”

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