Teen charged in senior prank pleads not guilty

INDIO, Calif. - One of three young men who allegedly put glue in door locks at La Quinta High School as part of a senior prank a few days before graduation pleaded not guilty to felony charges Friday.

Steven Jimenez, 18, of La Quinta, is charged with one count each of
conspiracy and vandalism over $400. He entered the plea at his arraignment Friday morning at the Larson Justice Center in Indio and is free on a $10,000 bond. He is due back in court Aug. 12.

Jimenez, two other 18-year-olds and a 17-year-old were arrested by
Riverside County sheriff's detectives who investigated the vandalism that
occurred June 2 at the school.

Besides Jimenez, felony charges were filed against:
   -- Joseph Alonzo Barnum, 18, of La Quinta, who faces one count each of
conspiracy, vandalism over $400 and cocaine possession; and
   -- Jose Requeno, 18, of Indio, who faces one count each of conspiracy
and vandalism over $400.

It was unclear if charges would be filed against the 17-year-old.

Requeno is scheduled to be arraigned this coming Wednesday and Barnum on Aug. 13, according to court records.

According to the criminal complaint, the three defendants carpooled to
the school's soccer field, walked to the school and put glue inside the door

Riverside County sheriff's Sgt. Alan Northrup previously alleged that the glue was placed in ``nearly all of the door locks at the school as part of
an apparent `senior class prank.' The outcome of this vandalism has caused
thousands of dollars in damage to the school's property.''

Sherry Johnstone, assistant superintendent for personnel at Desert Sands
Unified School District, confirmed in June that the accused students did not
take part in the school's commencement ceremony.

``Walking in graduation is a privilege to be earned,'' she wrote in an

Barnum and Requeno each posted a $10,000 bond.

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