Email hacking ruled out at LaBelle High

LaBELLE — There was some small relief last week for Hendry County school authorities investigating those recent high school senior pranks. At LaBelle High, the email system wasn’t actually hacked, as previously reported here and in several other media outlets.

Rather, the bogus memo that went out was the result of some seniors’ ingenious e-wizardry. Hendry School District IT employee Miguel Rodriguez sent the Caloosa Belle an email stating, “I just wanted to clarify that there was no hacking involved.”

Mr. Rodriguez explained that the students apparently had reproduced and edited a memorandum from the district to say male students would have to submit to a “penis inspection.”

One parent of an LHS student was quoted by NBC2 News as saying, “I couldn’t believe what I was getting, but then when I got a second email from a second teacher … I couldn’t believe it. I didn’t know what was going on.” She said she knew, though, “that the seniors always do some sort of senior prank, and I assumed that’s what it was from.”

Mr. Rodriguez said, “The email address used to send the email was obtained from an LHS alumni,” adding that the “memo” was made as an image “that was then sent to email groups created with poor permissions.”

Meanwhile, at Clewiston High School, where vandals did thousands of dollars’ worth of damage in spray-painting walls and walkways, gluing door locks and destroying the auditorium’s curtains, damage was still being assessed, but perpetrators were meted out some stiff discipline.

Neither the CHS administrative office nor that of Hendry County Schools Superintendent Paul Puletti returned emails or phone calls before deadline Monday.

Chris Felker can be reached at cfelker@newszap.com

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