New information released on trespasser at Pickering High School

Pickering High School
Pickering High School(KPLC)
Published: Apr. 27, 2023 at 11:34 AM CDT
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VERNON PARISH, La. (KALB) - According to an article published by Today’s Country 105.7, the principal of Pickering High School provided an update on the recent controversy about a trespasser at the school’s campus last week.

The principal, Jeffery Odom, said security footage was viewed of the incident. The footage, along with the investigation by the Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office, revealed that a teacher who escorts a wheelchair-bound child to their parent’s car every day, left the cafeteria around 12:30 p.m. on April 20, and propped open the door with a wooden block. As the teacher was helping the student to the car, the trespasser was able to make entry through the open door, which is normally locked.

The trespasser was identified as a female outpatient at Oceans Behavioral Hospital in DeRidder, according to Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office.

It was learned that the woman remained in the cafeteria and never went to any other location on campus. She remained in the cafeteria for about 30 minutes, then got on a bus and was eventually dropped off at the Middle School and Teen Center (MST), an after-care center in Fort Polk. When questioned by a worker at the center, the woman fled the area.

School was dismissed early that day, due to a baseball game. The door was open for about 3 minutes and the teacher allegedly did not see the woman when she came back inside the cafeteria.

The woman reportedly returned to the campus again on Friday afternoon (April 21), so the Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office was contacted and took the woman into custody.

Odom said that the School Resource Officer left the school campus prior to these events on April 20 to escort the baseball team to their game.

“As the Principal of Pickering High School, our Administrative team takes the responsibility of the safety of our students and school to heart,” Odom said. “We apologize for any extra concerns it may have caused throughout this investigation process. Now that the investigation has been completed, we have addressed the issues and corrected them. Our students are safe at Pickering High School and we will continue to keep them safe. Thank you all for your support and kind words throughout this time.”

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