Vandals damage Montebello Elementary

Northeast Baltimore school scheduled to reopen today

November 11, 2003|By Liz Bowie | Liz Bowie,SUN STAFF

Montebello Elementary School was closed yesterday after vandals broke into the school over the weekend, shattered interior glass doors, spray-painted the gymnasium floor and trashed the school.

"When you walk anywhere in the building there are shards of glass everywhere," said Richard O'Neill, a senior vice president for Edison Schools Inc, a for-profit company that operates the school. Montebello, at 2040 E. 32nd St. in Northeast Baltimore, is one of three city public schools run by Edison Schools.

O'Neill said school police responded to an alarm Saturday night, but did not see any signs of trouble and left. When school staff members arrived yesterday morning, they discovered widespread damage and decided to close the school for the day. It was scheduled to reopen today.

O'Neill said it appeared that several people were involved and that they were intent more on vandalism than theft because only a handful of computers or televisions were taken.

The vandals had thrown food from refrigerators around classrooms, upended flowerpots and cleared off teachers' desks. The office "was trashed," and the glass on a wooden conference table shattered, O'Neill said. An estimated cost of the damage was unavailable.

O'Neill said it is unclear how the vandals entered the building.

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