Midland Trail High School students partner with Fayette County Sheriff’s Department for investigation

HICO, WV (WOAY) – Last week the Midland Trail Community Center was broken into. They pried open doors, ransacked the complex, destroyed property and even stole trophies from the local little league program. 

“Things were taken and tore up,” Community Center President Bill Deligne said. “So we’re really wanting to get to the bottom of this and find out who did this.” 

The Fayette County Sheriff’s Department was analyzing footprints at the scene, and went to Midland Trail High School to figure things out. They wanted to look at shoe sizes to see if they could identify what kind it was.

But the students in the school’s forensics program stepped in to lend a hand.

“As they were talking to one of the teachers, one of the students in the forensics class said they could identify what kind of shoe that is,” Sheriff Mike Fridley said. “And it just started going from there.”

Whoever broke in was smart enough to steal a DVR box connected to the security system, getting rid of any video evidence there may have been.

The Fayette County forensics team came by to find some clues, but they also turned it into a learning experience. They invited the Midland Trail High School forensics students to get some hands-on experience. 

“They’re really excited,” Midland Trail High School President Richard Petitt said. “It’s great when you get more people involved. The community coming together, and everybody pitching in and doing their part, and giving kids an opportunity.”

The students looked at evidence and got some real world advice from the sheriff’s department. One student says it was a great learning opportunity and loved learning about just how much goes into forensics.

“It’s kind of overwhelming,” 11th grader Renae Kennison said. “There’s so much you could miss and it’s kind of stressful.”

The Midland Trail Community Center has since taken some extra measures to secure the facility and prevent future break ins.

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