Police responded to a break-in at Promontory Heights Elementary in Chilliwack early Thursday morning. (Contributed)

Gruesome photos of damage following break-in at B.C. school

Several classrooms suffer heavy damage following vandalism

Promontory Heights elementary school was broken into early Thursday morning, with vandals leaving a horrible mess behind just days before spring break is over.

The superintendent of schools, Evelyn Novak, said the RCMP were completing an investigation Thursday morning.

“Early this morning we had a break in and damage at Promontory in the main school site,” she said. “We are working with RCMP as they complete their investigation. Once they have cleared their work we will start the cleanup, repairs and make sure building is secured.”

The vandals broke into both the main school building, and two portables. Witnesses have said online that they heard loud noises, including breaking glass, coming from the school. Several calls were made the RCMP.

While classes are still out for spring break, the school is currently being used for a spring break program. When staff and campers showed up Thursday morning they arrived to find the RCMP and the mess.

Teachers were also arriving Thursday morning to set up for class to resume after spring break next Tuesday. Initially, several classrooms were reported to be heavily vandalized. However, school district staff have said that the damage was limited to the kitchen areas, with a lot of food thrown around. There was also a damaged toilet, and a couple of projectors that will need to be repaired.

While some Promontory parents were angry at the news and wanting to go to the school to help clean up, staff said the district’s maintenance crews managed to clean up the school by the end of the day Thursday, including fixing the toilet.

Still, this will add to the overall cost of vandalism for the school year. It remains one of the higher costs the district has to shell out each year in its operations budget, and they’ve been beefing up their security systems recently. Over the calendar year of 2016, for example, vandalism repair cost the district $35,779.

The district also pays a lot to have alarms that are monitored, security cameras, and security companies. The alarms did go off, and companies were notified, staff said, but a lot of damage was done before a response was sent out. In 2016, the district paid Integra Security $55,120 for security runner services, Paladin Security $9,322 for alarm monitoring, and Griffin Security $19,316 for security services. Griffin Security’s Brian Goldstone said his company was not the company hired to respond to alarms.

READ: Vandalism costs take away from classrooms, says Chilliwack school district

More information is expected on this crime as the investigation continues. Watch this website for details.

More to come.

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