Teen's camera catches adult locker thief

October 23, 2009 3:08:44 PM PDT
An adult hall monitor at a high school on New York's Long Island is facing petit larceny charges after she was apparently caught on video breaking into school lockers. She's a fan of crime dramas and even wants to be a crime scene investigator.

Tiana Rapp sure got off to a great start this week.

"They do that stuff on tv, so I guess we decided it would be a great way to figure it out ourselves," she said.

After someone stole $150 from her locker at Newfield High School, tTana and a friend set up a camera in the girls' locker room.

Police say they caught Linda Cubano, the hall monitor, red handed, rummaging through Tiana's stuff.

Tiana adds, the video shows her walking past the locker checking the locker room to see if anyone was in there, then a minute later she comes back and enters the locker with a key."

Police say Cubano's been under suspicion for stealing from student lockers for two years.

They even confronted her last year, but she denied it, and they couldn't make the charges stick until now.

Tiana's camera recorded for just 12 minutes, but her timing was impeccable.

"Usually Murphy's Law being what it is it would usually take days and weeks to get somebody to time it just right," said police.

Cubano lives in this house not far from the school and didn't come to the door when Eyewitness News stopped by.

Detectives say when they showed her the video, she confessed to at least 20 locker thefts.

One of the victims Samantha Gough says school administrators could have stopped it. "We went to the school and we told the school and they thought it was a student," she said.

But police did suspect Cubano all along, so Eyewitness News tried to find out why the school never reassigned her.

The Middle Country school district wouldn't answer that question, but released a statement detailing improvements it made to locker security.

Still, the thefts apparently continued, until Tiana's tape.

They could have looked into it more since it was happening to so many kids, instead of suspecting that a student was smart enough to somehow have gotten a key along the way," said Tiana.

Web Produced By: Scott Curkin

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