A Connecticut teenager was arrested after allegedly gaining access to a school’s database and changing a yearbook caption to an Adolf Hitler quote and changing another to include the name of a suicide bomber from the Boston marathon.
Hollister Tryon, a student at Glastonbury High School, has been charged with two counts of third degree computer crimes, according to a police arrest newspaper.
Authorities began investigating in May after school administrators reported that several senior year directory citations had been altered. One of them was traded for a Hitler quote that was wrongly attributed to George Floyd, a black man who was killed by Minneapolis police, the arrest log said.
Another quote was changed to refer to drugs and to the name of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who was convicted in the 2013 Boston Marathon attack that killed three people and injured hundreds more.
“After conducting an internal administrative review, the case was referred to the police department for criminal investigation,” authorities said.
Tryon, 18, was arrested on July 9 “following the two investigations,” officials said.
“He is accused of illegally accessing a computer database used by students to submit their directory quotes and of modifying the quotes of the two students before the yearbook was published in October 2020,” said authorities.
Tryon’s bail was set at $ 5,000. It was not known on Tuesday if he had a lawyer.
The high school addressed the incident in May and apologized for not entering the edited captions before the yearbook was printed. School officials said they immediately suspended distribution of the directories, asking students to return them so that replacement pages could be added. The student was sanctioned, but details were not disclosed.
“We deeply regret that we did not fall victim to acts of fanaticism and vandalism prior to the printing of the yearbook. We are reviewing and revising our directory procedures for the collection and review of future student submissions,” school officials said in a letter to parents.
Further investigation of the incident revealed another quote “glorifying the war in the yearbook,” the school said.
“There is no place for all of this in our school system,” officials said. “We recognize that racism and privilege exist in our society. As a district, we are committed to examining our school system and school culture and dismantling all practices that support inequality, privilege and racism. “