KIRKWOOD, Mo. – Three teenagers were taken into custody in connection with vandalizing and spraying racist graffiti at three Kirkwood schools.
Eighteen-year-old Daniel Moore and 18-year-old Christian Reese were arrested for property damage. The third suspect, a juvenile whose identity has not been released, was also taken into custody.
A spokesperson for the Kirkwood Police Department said they’ve completed their investigation and have turned the case over to the St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for consideration.
The Kirkwood School District said Wednesday one of the teenagers is a current student and the other two are Kirkwood High School graduates.
Surveillance video captured three suspects entering the east alleyway of Kirkwood High School at 5:56 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 6.
Police say the teens then spray-painted derogatory and racist graffiti on the outside of the building of Kirkwood High School. North Kirkwood Middle School and Nipher Middle School were also hit.
The vandalism was later removed by the school district’s maintenance crew.
Kirkwood School Superintendent Dr. David Ulrich sent a message to families thanking the community for coming together to support students and staff during this time. The message reads, in part:
We need to heal together and learn from this incident. We will work with our student leaders and members of our school community to determine our next steps in creating a school climate of equity and safety, where everyone is inclusive of one another. Our school leaders have plans to continue the learning and conversation, which will be led by our counselors. We will support our school family and heal together.
Even as we experience many emotions, we must remember to be kind and compassionate toward each other. We must address racists and hurtful language when it occurs.Dr. Ulrich, Kirkwood School District Superintendent
The Kirkwood school community has since come together in a very strong way to support one another and speak out against racism.
There was a march of dozens of people heading down West Essex Avenue. Students, family, and faculty, some carrying signs that said “Black Lives Matter.” That group went to the Kirkwood Police Department. Dozens of people also gathered at the high school Wednesday morning to speak out against the vandalism.