Sunday, April 10, 2005

A Study In Larceny: How Was This Allowed To Happen?

An unnamed 18-year-old high school student in Lake Stevens, Washington State, has been arrested and charged with selling thousands of dollars worth of school property on e-Bay. The student, who is now a senior, has apparently been stealing from Lake Stevens High since he was a freshman:

At his home, police found dozens of items, including expensive audio-video equipment. His take over three years was estimated at $30,000.

"None of the thefts were a significant amount at one time, it was sort of piecemeal," Celori said.

Police said the student secretly had a master key to the school's doors and knowledge of when the alarm system was off. He came into the school after hours and removed projectors, high-end calculators and other property, Celori said.

The suspect was found out last week after a teacher overheard him mention selling equipment online. The teacher searched on eBay and found property that had been reported stolen.

The student confessed to the thefts after he was arrested, police said.

After his arrest, the unnamed student was suspended, pending expulsion.

As a classroom teacher, I can understand that it is often the policy of media to withhold the names of alleged juvenile delinquents. Unlike the media, teachers are required to maintain "professional silence" regarding the names and misdeeds of their students.

The accused thief is 18 years old, and yet none of the other media sources covering this particular story (here, and there) have chosen to give his name, even though they are under no legal obligation to keep the name confidential. Hmmm... we wonder why.
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