SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash.-- Deputies tracked down 52 of 58 stolen laptops on Wednesday afternoon with the help of the suspects’ mother.
On Wednesday, Spokane County Sheriff’s deputies said dozens of laptops were stolen from two different classrooms at Evergreen Elementary on Monday night. The suspects most likely entered through the cafeteria.
School officials discovered the theft Tuesday morning. Investigators said 58 Apple Macbook Air laptop computers were taken from the Evergreen in the Mead School District. The estimated total loss for the school district was over $69,000.
"I think everyone was shocked and kind of felt violated that someone would come and take a bunch of computers away from kids,” said Justin Valentine, Assistant Principal at Evergreen Elementary.
A school janitor reportedly received a couple of alarm calls late Monday evening and early Tuesday morning but did not find any evidence of a burglary when he had checked things out.
Deputies said they received a call from a mother Monday night too. She reported that her three sons were missing. Authorities pieced the two calls together and later interviewed the family.
Deputies said the three boys (ages- 8, 14, and 15) denied taking the laptops. Authorities received a call following the interview from the mother. She stated that her kids later confessed to the theft. The eight-year-old child is a student at Evergreen Elementary. Deputies said the boys broke into the school and stole the laptops with the help of a relative.
Charges will be sent to the juvenile prosecutor. Deputies are still trying to find the additional six laptops.
Staff at the school said they will be more careful with the computers and plan to lock them up from now on.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, there were no obvious signs of forced entry into the school or classrooms.