When senior pranks go a bit too far: The ladybug debacle

Senior prank season is upon us, that glorious time of the school year when graduating seniors say goodbye with one final act by which they can be remembered. There are many ways to live out this time honored tradition, but one school in St. Mary’s County, Maryland learned where the line is when it comes to pranks worth pulling. The offending prank: Ladybugs. Ladybugs everywhere.

On Wednesday morning at about 3:40am, five masked students allegedly broke into Chopticon High School and released 72,000 ladybugs in the building. Two other pranksters were waiting in the car. Where does one acquire 72,000 ladybugs, you may be asking. One of the students involved is believed to have bought them on the Internet, according to the police. But why would students release so many ladybugs into a school, you may also be asking. To that, I have absolutely no answer whatsoever.

Needless to say, some school officials (and, probably, clean-up crews) were not amused. “It was a mess,” a school staff member told the Washington Post. “When you walked in the building, they covered the walls and hallways, flying around, and they were all in a pile in different areas of the building.”

We’re not going to lie: plenty of students reportedly got a kick out of the prank, though others felt sad for the ladybugs. Seriously, what happens to those little guys, now? More importantly, what happens to kids behind the prank—which is being take VERY seriously? We know they were probably just thinking a little too big when it comes to leaving a legacy. Unfortunately, their actions aren’t being handled lightly.

Seven people have been arrested in total, with four of them minors and three adults, according to the Associated Press. The underage suspects are charged with burglary, property destruction and disruption of school activities, while the adults will be charged by “criminal summons.” No word yet on how the school will handle the situation.

This isn’t the first time ladybugs were used in a senior prank. The same trick was pulled at Randolph Union High School in 2013. In that case, the students involved had to face a judge, and the whole class helped chip in to pay for the school’s restoration. It wasn’t awesome for anyone in the long run.

Pranks are all about good times, but some have real consequences. If your prank could do damage to property, come up with something else. And don’t, under any circumstances, release living creatures into your school. It may seem funny at first, but nobody wins—not the students, not the school and certainly not the ladybugs.

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