12:05 PM PDT, June 8, 2021
Thirty-year-old Casey Garcia was arrested after she impersonated her 13-year old daughter at her school. Garcia donned a yellow Marvel hoodie and even dyed her hair darker to look more like the 7th-grade student. Then she says, using her daughter’s student ID number, she went to school.
And she documented what she did and put it on YouTube.
Casey said at one point in the video, “Oh my goodness. I am going to get so caught. I’m actually really scared now. I am literally on the campus of a middle school.”
“I then said hello to the principal, and then I spoke to another faculty member, and then I went to all my classes. I even ate lunch without a mask,” she added.
Garcia says teachers were more concerned that she had her phone out and said it took until the last class of the day for someone to recognize she wasn’t her daughter.
“I wanted to see if I could make it the entire day without anybody noticing,” she explains. And I’d say up until seventh period. I think that’s a very long day for a 30-year-old.”
On her YouTube channel, Garcia says she did not intend to embarrass the school but to test campus security and shed light on a bigger issue.
“We have a problem. There have been one too many mass shootings in schools, elementary schools, colleges, high schools. That is disgusting to think of that this could have been prevented just by putting metal detectors and more security.”
El Paso County Sheriff’s arrested Garcia two days after she posted the video of her at the school. She also recorded that interaction and posted it online.
“What made you guys come down besides the viral video?” She asked the officer during the arrest. He replied, saying, “They sent us to come. You have a traffic warrant, so that’s why we’re here, ma’am.”
Besides the unrelated traffic warrant, Garcia was charged with suspicion of criminal trespassing and tampering with government records. She has been released after posting bond.
In a statement to a Texas news outlet, the San Elizario Independent School District Superintendent said, “While there was a breach in security by an individual associated as a parent with the school. We want to assure you that our security measures are being reviewed and evaluated.”
And after the ordeal, Casey Garcia still had the same question: Are children safe in schools? “We need better security at our schools,” she said. “This is what I tried to prove. And I don’t mean to be curt, but I kind of feel like I proved it.”