Crime & Courts

Burglar takes $3,000 cello, saws, ATV and more from Lexington County high school

A burglar with a wide range of interests struck Pelion High School early Monday morning and left with or damaged more than $17,000 in tools and instruments used to teach students.

The School Resource Officer responded to a call Monday after school officials discovered that someone had illegally entered Pelion High overnight. The burglar got away with a $3,000 cello, a $1,000 violin, arc welders, chop saws, drills, plasma cutters and a John Deere Gator, a four-wheeler valued at $8,000, according to a Lexington County Sheriff’s Department police report.

The school’s band, which is set to compete in the Lower State Marching Band Championships on Saturday, also lost two guitars and a set of tenor drums, according to Lexington 1 spokesperson Mary Beth Hill. Still, the band will persist and perform at the competition this weekend, Hill wrote in an email.

Since the incident occurred, police recovered at least one plasma cutter and a second violin, which was dropped in the school hallway and broke, according to sheriff’s department spokesperson Capt. Adam Myrick. Some other items were found “on the side of the road in Pelion,” Myrick said in an email.

Other missing or vandalized items might be added to the list as school administrators discover the losses, Hill said. The investigation is ongoing, according to Myrick.

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Isabella Cueto is a bilingual multimedia journalist covering Lexington County, one of the fastest-growing areas of South Carolina. She previously worked as a reporter for the Medill Justice Project and WLRN, South Florida’s NPR station. She is a graduate of the University of Miami, where she studied journalism and theatre arts.