Calhoun hit by vandals, thieves

Published 12:00 pm Thursday, April 25, 2013

Thieves entered the building by breaking a window.

Thieves entered the building by breaking a window.

By Fred Guarino
The Lowndes Signal

The Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office is seeking help from the public in solving the weekend vandalism of The Calhoun School that resulted in about $10,000 in damages to school facilities and technology equipment, as well as the theft of computers.

“I don’t even know what words to use to describe this act,” said Sgt. G. Lashun Hutson, an investigator with the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office.

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He said the vandalism occurred sometime between 2:30 p.m. on Saturday and 6 a.m. Monday morning, he said he believes there was more than one individual involved.

“We know at 2:30 p.m. (Saturday) the building was secure and everything was intact because the building was checked,” Hutson said.

“They entered the building by throwing a brick through the window. And once they were inside, they destroyed projectors, SMART Boards — they destroyed a couple of those — they took the projector to one of those white boards and took laptops, took computers and did a lot of damage,” Hutson said.

“I think it is really sad that individuals would destroy our schools,” said Lowndes County School Superintendent Dr. Daniel Boyd. “Children benefit from good schools with technology. It’s truly unfortunate that we have lost technology that we have worked hard to get because someone desires to do that.”

Calhoun School Principal Kenneth E. Fair estimated damages and stolen technology to total more than $10,000.

Fair said two classrooms and the school library were damaged in terms of equipment and there were several items stolen, including computers.

Adding to the damage, Boyd indicated that the school system might not be able to replace stolen and damaged technology equipment.

He said anytime vandalism occurs “there’s a huge deductible that has to be paid… between $500 and $1,000 for each situation.”

He said that means the school system would have to pay a lot  “if we replace it.”

He explained that the school system is losing teacher units and funds in many areas. “So there is a possibility that we may not replace it,” he said.

Boyd and Sgt. Hutson pointed out, however, there was video surveillance of the vandalism from cameras that were in place.

“We’re going to look. In the meantime, we’re just knocking on some doors in the neighborhood and asking them (neighbors) what they’ve seen,” Hutson said. He also said a couple of people have been questioned.

“Any information that anybody has that can help us in this investigation, please give me a call at (334) 548-2158 or 548-2222,” Hutson said. “And if they wish to remain anonymous, they will.”