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Vandalism linked to ‘Devious licks’ TikTok trend closes bathrooms at Newport Middle High School

Published: 9/24/2021 9:52:35 PM
Modified: 9/24/2021 10:10:58 PM

NEWPORT, N.H. — Students have damaged at least three bathrooms and caused them to be closed at Newport Middle High School since the start of the school year, which school administrators blame on a social media trend that is challenging students to vandalize school property.

Toilets, plumbing and soap and paper towel dispensers have been damaged, Newport officials wrote in a letter to parents imploring them to talk to their children about the vandalism. Items have also been stolen.

The vandalism comes as a TikTok video, called “Devious Licks,” is being blamed for damage at schools across the country, including those in the Twin States. In the second week of school at Newport, two boys’ bathrooms were damaged.

“To date, one boys’ bathroom will remain closed until significant damage can be repaired,” read the letter, which was sent to parents Friday and signed by high school principal Shannon Martin, middle school principal Tom Ronning and Sugar River Valley Technical Center Director Jennifer Opalinski. “Yesterday, we were able to open the second boys’ bathroom, only to have a third bathroom vandalized on the same day.”

In the letter, school officials asked parents to talk to their children about the vandalism and to report any information they might have about the destruction. This summer, the school upgraded bathrooms and locker rooms.

“The total cost of these damaged items is growing,” the letter stated.

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