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Police Arrest 10 Teens After Vandalism Report

POSTED: 6:26 pm EST November 4, 2005
UPDATED: 6:54 pm EST November 4, 2005

WAKEFIELD, Mass. -- Parents and students are speaking out after the students said they were wrongfully arrested on Halloween for taking a shortcut through school property.

Parents claim that the police were insensitive and arbitrary in arresting teens that were doing nothing wrong. NewsCenter 5's Jim Boyd reported that the police said the teens may have been at the wrong place at the wrong time, but they have to learn respect for the law.

It all started Halloween night when a group of 30 or more teens were allegedly vandalizing the grounds of the Greenwood School in Wakefield.

"People were throwing trash, bottles and eggs at our police officers as they responded down here to complaints to kids in the school yard," said Wakefield police Chief Rick Smith.

Smith said that is when his officers had to draw the line.

"The officer decided enough is enough and they had to restore peace," he said.

The teens said they were only cutting through the school yard as a shortcut.

"We weren't even there for two minutes and they came around the corner and picked us up," said student Katie Roy.

Roy and Taylor Graham said they were not part of the vandalism and claimed that police made no real effort to find the egg-throwers or the teens spraying shaving cream. Their parents are upset that the teens were taken into custody and not allowed to call home.

"I had then tried to call her on her cell phone and after about the third or fourth time trying to call her, she answered the phone really quickly -- 'I'm at the police station. They won't let me talk,'" said Roy's father, Steve.

Ten teens were arrested and charged with trespassing.

"She had no shaving cream on her; she had no eggs, no toilet paper. She was arrested for merely trespassing where it is OK to trespass very other day of the year," said Roy's mother, Laurie.

"Every piece of school property is posted 'No trespassing after dark.' Anyone really has no business being on the property here after dark," Smith said.

The teens will have to complete 10 hours of community service. The parents are seeking a meeting with Wakefield officials to share their concerns.

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