Vandals Strike Two West Michigan High Schools, Students Respond Immediately
KALAMAZOO COUNTY, Mich. (May 23, 2014) – Acts of vandalism happening at two schools in Kalamazoo County separated by only a few miles. The principal of Comstock High School said the graffiti could be seen as students arrived to school Friday morning.
A similar scenario at Gull Lake High School in Richland. Vandals there spray-painted profanities on the football field and the concession stand.
At Comstock High School principal Josh Cunningham told FOX 17 the football field will be used for graduation on May 30th and they will be working to clean-up the graffiti to ensure it will be there for the ceremony.
The baseball dugouts for the Comstock Colts were also targeted by the criminals but according to coach Rich Bailey his players took it upon themselves to make sure the impression didn’t last for long.
Varsity players for the Colts are expected to do more than just ‘play ball’.
“We do a lot of the work ourselves,” said Coach Bailey. “We rake up after every game. We try to mow it ourselves. Do a lot of the work to it. So when something happens we take it personally.”
You wouldn’t know it to look at it now but both dugouts were covered in obscenity laced graffiti. The same vandals mark remained on the press box and concession stands at the school’s football field.
Coach Bailey said his players came to him, “This morning they were at my door during first block saying, ‘Coach, we got to do something. We can’t leave it like that.'”
The team had an upcoming game to prepare for but practice on Friday had a different feel.
“We had three groups working here. Some guys taping and trying to clean up, we had others painting and had some kids hitting in the cage and we rotated around,” the coach said.
Bailey said his team didn’t see it as a setback, “It wasn’t a great practice in terms of mechanics and baseball but I think it worked out pretty well.”
Some of the same markings from the vandals were also on the football field and concession stand at Gull Lake High School leading school officials to believe the vandalism is related.
“When bad things happen that is your first reaction; You are upset. You are angry. You want someone to pay,” said Bailey. “But then you realize this is still our place and we got to take care of it. And you get a real sense of accomplishment and real sense of pride and I think it brought us closer together.”
Comstock High School principal said they are in the process of reviewing surveillance cameras around the school hoping that some of the people responsible can be identified. Anyone with information on either crime is asked to call the Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Department or the Richland Police Department.