Local school officials are warning students to not take part in a new TikTok challenge of damaging or stealing school property.
A “Devious Licks” challenge on the social media platform TikTok encourages students to steal or destroy school property and then post a picture or video of the item as a trophy.
These types of incidents have happened at Orestimba High School and Yolo Middle School, according to the Newman-Crows Landing Unified School District.
“Please be aware that this activity is akin to theft and vandalism,” the District said in a Facebook post. “We have increased our surveillance of the common areas of occurrence including the monitoring of available video footage.
“This is a costly, disruptive, and serious offense,” the District said. “Students who are found stealing, in possession of stolen property, or found to have committed vandalism or destruction of school property will receive the appropriate consequences which may include, but not limited to, suspension, notification of law enforcement, and holding the parents responsible for financial retribution to cover the cost of any damages.”
If the stolen or damaged property has a value of $950 or more, it could result in a felony charge, according to the California penal code.
The District encouraged parents to speak to their children and make sure they understand this type of behavior is not acceptable.
“Please assist us by discussing this matter with your student and remind them that this is not an appropriate behavior, and they should not participate in this trend,” the District said. “We pride ourselves on the behavior of our students. It is unfortunate that this destructive activity is occurring on our campuses.”
The viral trend has seen students posting videos of stealing and damaging school property from soap dispensers to toilets. Most of the documented damage and thefts has been in restrooms.
TikTok, once aware of the trend, has been trying to remove the videos and a search of the term “devious licks” results in this message: “No results found. This phrase may be associated with behavior or content that violates our guidelines. Promoting a safe and positive experience is TikTok’s top priority. For more information, we invite you to review our Community Guidelines.”
However, a search of the term with various misspellings still turns up videos.