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Payback: School cameras capture vandals

Property damage at Hart High School was estimated at $30,000

Posted: August 16, 2009 9:22 p.m.
Updated: August 17, 2009 4:55 a.m.
 
The security cameras recently installed at all William S. Hart Union High School District campuses are already paying off.

During the summer, they captured a group of kids vandalizing Hart High School.

The group reportedly broke windows and vandalized computers in some of the buildings during the week of June 22, said Rob Gapper, chief operations officer for the William S. Hart Union High School District.

"There was also a personal vehicle that was vandalized," Gapper said.

The damage was estimated at about $30,000.

After they discovered the vandalism, Hart district officials reviewed the footage from their new security cameras and were able to identify the juveniles, Gapper said.

While Gapper was unaware how the specific Hart High School case was handled, he said the district typically looks for payback.

"In cases like this, we seek every avenue possible to get restitution for the damage," he said.

The cameras, installed in common areas like walkways and parking lots of all Hart district schools, became operational in June.

Hart district officials envisioned the cameras as a way to deter crime and promote safety.

"We believe that we have a responsibility to protect students, faculty members and visitors to our campuses," Gapper said.

"Likewise, we believe that it's our responsibility as custodians of public property to take every measure to protect that public property."

Along with security cameras, the district uses fences, gates and locks and hires supervisors to monitor its campuses.

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