Last week, five teens thought it would be funny to spray paint insensitive messages on the walls of a rival school. But they’re not laughing now.
Arlington, Texas police arrested the Arlington High School seniors for allegedly tagging the exterior walls of Martin High School with racist and anti-transgender graffiti, CBS News reports.
Authorities identified the suspects as Ryan Westbrook, 17, Ethan Sigmund, 18, Christian Joeckel, 18, Hayden Honoloka, 17, and 18-year-old Cameron Bodenstab.
The police told CBS all the suspects confessed. They face a state felony charge of painting graffiti on school property, according to the Dallas Morning News.
They’re accused of painting the words “Whites Only” over a drinking fountain. The words “Trans Only” were written near a bathroom—an apparent reference to the recent federal directive to permit students to use the bathroom of the gender with which they identify.
Additionally, a twin horseshoe logo of Arlington High School was painted on a wall. And another piece of graffiti said the vandalism was “payback for the parking lot.”
CBS spoke with Martin High School student Kirstin Pham about the incident:
“For them to do something like that to another school is very disrespectful and immature. I feel like we’re all miniature adults and should be treating each other as such.”
Police Lt. Christopher Cook told CBS that the suspects were “remorseful,” adding:
“I don’t think they gave a lot of thought to the ramifications unfortunately, you’re held accountable for and there’s consequences when you engage in this sort of behavior.”
Authorities held them on a $2,500 bond; the teens face up to a year behind bars.