Restitution sought for broken Augusta school windows

Richmond County school officials said today they are seeking restitution after a Christmas break incident in which a boy and girl were charged with smashing 158 windows at Copeland Elementary School.

"The case will go to Juvenile Court and we have requested restitution," school system spokesman Louis Svehla responded in an e-mail. "Juvenile Court can order restitution when their case is adjudicated or have the option to not award restitution."

School officials said Tuesday the cost of the damage was $24,000 - about $8,000 more than had been previously estimated. The expense rose when asbestos was found in putty holding the windows in place, and an environmental specialist had to be called in.

Svehla also confirmed that the 9-year-old boy charged in the case was a student of Copeland Elementary. He said the 13-year-old girl was a Langford Middle pupil but had been sent to the alternative school after fighting with a school system officer.

School officials have said any restitution would have to come from the parents of the two arrested.

The girl was charged with criminal damage to property in the second degree, a felony. The boy was charged as an unruly child due to his age.

Firefighters were the first to see the broken windows after receiving an alarm call Dec. 24, according to a Richmond County sheriff's report. At the school, the girl and boy, who were carrying metal poles later determined to be table legs, were questioned by a deputy. They denied breaking the windows and said they saw two other people with baseball bats do the damage.

Police decided to charge the two after questioning them.

 

 

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