Teen prank costs victims, could put pranksters in danger
JEFFERSON COUNTY (KMOV) -- The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department is investigating another incident of someone kicking a front door and damaging property. Sierra Francik said she heard a loud bang at her House Springs home last night around 9:30 p.m.
“So we jumped up and as we were running to the front door, I got my Ring notification and I looked down and saw that it was a kid who had kicked our front door,” she said.
Video recorded by a Ring security camera showed what appeared to be a teenage boy wearing a hat kicking her front door and then running away. After posting the video on social media, Francik said a woman contacted her to say she’d heard a loud bang at her front door but didn’t realize what had happened because she did not have a security camera.
“She said her kids were terrified,” said Francik.
There’s been a string of similar incidents reported in Jefferson County. It’s believed that teens are carrying out a TikTok challenge that began last year on college campuses called the “kick door challenge.” It’s a variation on the ding-dong ditch prank, but this time around, pranksters are leaving behind hundreds of dollars in damage.
“I was ticked off, you know,” said Matthew Midgett.
Midgett said his front porch security camera recorded a teenage boy walking onto his porch shortly after 10:00 p.m. one day last month, then recording himself kicking the storm door. He said the kick broke the glass at the bottom of the door and damaged the door latch. Repairs will cost hundreds of dollars.
“I have to replace the entire door and it’s going to be about 300 for the door alone,” said Midgett.
Midgett said sheriff’s department investigators found the teen believed to be responsible for the damage at his house. And he said the teen may have vandalized several other homes in his neighborhood. Francik said it’s not a harmless prank when damage is done.
“Property damage is being done all over and at some point, we have to stop it,”
Midgett said he’s worried a homeowner may see a teen on a front porch and not realize the teen is there to pull a prank. And that may put the teen in real danger.
“I’m afraid that one of these kids is going to be met by somebody with a gun,” he said.
Francik met with a deputy today to report the incident at her house. Midgett said he’s hoping the teenager who caused damage at his house will be required to pay restitution.
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