$200,000 damage at Kelso school: counting the cost of vandalism attack

VANDALS have ransacked Kelso Public School causing up to $200,000 in damage as they made their way from classroom to classroom over the weekend.

The damage occurred between 5.30pm on Saturday and 10.30am on Sunday.

Those responsible smashed their way through 13 of the school’s 21 classrooms, pouring paint over rooms and smashing computers and smartboards as they went.

The attack prompted an immediate resonse from NSW Education and Communities, which yesterday announced a major security upgrade for the school, including the installation of closed circuit television and an alarm.

Chifley local area command Acting Inspector Leanne Walsh yesterday said scene-of-crime officers spent a large part of Sunday at the school sorting through the mess looking for physical evidence.

“The incident occurred between 5.30pm on Saturday and 10.30am Sunday. Thirteen of the school’s 21 rooms have been targeted with an estimated $100,000 to $200,000 in damage,” Acting Inspector Walsh said.

“It appears they have broken into the canteen via the roller door and once inside thrown drinks around. 

“From the canteen they have been able to access the main body of the school and once inside smashed smart boards, televisions and computers.

“Forensic police attended the scene on Sunday and we are now appealing for any member of the community who may have seen anyone on school grounds during this period to contact police on 6332 8699 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.”

Acting Inspector Walsh said the incident was a timely reminder for the community to be vigilant and to contact police immediately if they see anyone on school grounds.

Acting Inspector Walsh said police  would always follow up information and said anyone found on school grounds outside school hours without permission could expect to be prosecuted.

Anyone caught on school grounds without authorisation will receive a $550 on-the-spot fine.

Anyone who fails to leave the school grounds will be issued with another $550 on-the-spot fine.

Acting Inspector Walsh also encouraged members of the community to make contact if they saw anything suspicious, asking people to practice Neighbourhood Watch and keep their eyes and ears open.

“Police will act on all information we receive. That’s what we get paid for,”she said.

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