GONZALES — Vandals broke into Galvez Middle School on both Tuesday and Wednesday nights, where they smashed windows, poured paint on floors and stairs, and sprayed fire extinguishers, but surveillance cameras provided enough information for Ascension Parish deputies to arrest an adult and two children, one of whom is 12 years old.
School officials said the damage will be cleaned up and repaired before the start of school Aug. 6.
The three taken into custody were found on the school grounds, where a Sheriff’s Office foot patrol had been put in place Wednesday night after the school was struck by vandals Tuesday night, Sheriff’s Office Lt. Col. Bobby Webre said.
It’s not clear whether the three were involved with the vandalism on Tuesday night, he said.
Khrystopher Landix, 18, 41379 Tulip Hill Drive, Prairieville, was booked on three counts of simple burglary, 37 counts of simple criminal damage to property, seven counts of criminal mischief and two counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
Landix was booked into the Ascension Parish Jail. Bail had not been set by Thursday evening.
Two juveniles, a 14-year-old and a 12-year-old, eachwere booked with three counts of burglary, 33 counts of damage to property and three counts of criminal mischief, according to the Sheriff’s Office. Both juveniles were booked into the Assumption Parish Youth Detention Center.
The vandals broke windows in classrooms and doors at the school at 42018 La. 933 in Prairieville, released most of the fire extinguishers, poured paint on floors and stairwells, and poured cooking oil and water on the floors, said Johnnie Balfantz, spokesperson for the school district. Profanity was written on at least one whiteboard in a classroom, he said.
Security cameras at the school were damaged by the vandals but still provided information that led to the arrests, he said.
Galvez Middle is one of the schools in the district undergoing major renovations and improvements. Over the summer, the football field was turned 90 degrees to make way for a new administration building, and the old administration building will be turned into additional classroom space. The present two-story classroom building also was reroofed this summer.
Balfantz said the school district has yet to reach an estimate on the damage caused by the vandals.
“You just don’t know what the motive is,” he said.