Midd-West: ‘Mischief’ was an accident

BEAVER SPRINGS – New information became available Tuesday regarding the West Snyder Elementary School criminal mischief incident that occurred during a high school football game Friday, Sept. 13.

Greg Hetrick, the booster club president for the East Juniata/Midd-West football cooperative, said he believes the whole situation was simply an accident.

“It has been determined that EJ/Midd-West had nothing to do with the incident,” Hetrick said.

According to the initial report issued by Pennsylvania State Police Selinsgrove, it was thought that unknown person’s entered the elementary school locker room during the game. Police had originally said the suspects believed to be involved stole and/or damaged the Pine Grove Area High School team’s money and phones.

However, Hetrick said a video recording proved no criminal mischief occurred during the game. On Tuesday evening, Midd-West School District Superintendent Dr. Wesley Knapp said camera’s are placed in the hallways of the school. Knapp said the only video he was aware of was one that came from a camera in the hallway outside of the locker room.

“The camera footage was looked over immediately to check for suspects,” Knapp said. “On the video we confirmed that the only person to go in and out of the locker room during the game was a school employee.”

Knapp said the employee was sent into the locker room five minutes prior to the end of the game to turn the water valve on, which would allow the Pine Grove players to take showers. Unknown to the employee, the shower area was where the team had stored their belongings during the game and turning on the water valve caused them to get wet, Knapp explained.

“After the game Pine Grove team members began coming into the locker room to find the showers on and their stuff getting wet,” he said. “This caused them to throw (their belongings) into the main locker area … when the rest of the team came in celebrating their win, they did not see the stuff on the ground.”

Knapp said he believes this is the point where phones, money and other items belonging to the Pine Grove players became lost or damaged. After looking at the video footage and seeing that no acts of theft or mischief occurred, Pine Grove was contacted, and they apologized for any confusion, Knapp said.

Knapp said the case was turned over to state police after an upset parent made complaints about the incident. When contacted by The Sentinel on Tuesday, police said they were not able to confirm any of the statements, as the investigation is ongoing.